Former Democrat Rep. Steve Israel Warns of Trump’s ‘November Surprise’

Democrats’ chances of taking back the House of Representatives in the fall are increasingly favorable.

For months now, we’ve been subject to media talk about how Democrats are energized compared to Republicans, and are champing at the bit to impeach President Trump once they’re back in power. Democrat leadership isn’t exactly tamping down on this burning desire either. (RELATED: Pelosi Admits Dem-Controlled House Would Seek To Impeach Trump.)

So, congressional Republicans are in trouble, despite talk of a impending “red wave” from the President. It’s so bad, in fact, that even Sean Hannity, a fervent backer of Trump, is warning Republicans that a Democrat takeover of the House is likely. (RELATED: Sean Hannity Warns That Democrats Could Retake the House of Representatives.)

With everyone predicting huge gains for Democrats, there is one voice of unexpected dissent, ringing a warning bell for liberal voters. Steve Israel, the former Democrat representative of New York’s 3rd congressional district, penned an op-ed in The Hill, warning Democrats of a possible “November surprise” by President Trump.

However, this isn’t the kind of “surprise” you might think. It’s not the so-called “red wave” Republican National Committee Kayleigh McEnany says will surprise the media, (who is openly rooting for Democrats to win.)(RELATED: RNC Spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany Issues Warning to Republican Voters About November.) It’s actually way more sinister.

Israel goes into Alex Jones-level paranoia in warning that Trump could, should Democrats take the House, “invalidate the results.” Basically, Israel says Trump could upend the democratic process by refusing to recognize the legitimacy of the election, causing chaos in the House.

If you think this sounds like the insane rambling of a tinfoil-chewing crank, you need only consider the kind of ribald language Israel uses to refer to Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Here’s just one example:

Seems to me, Israel could use a lesson in verbal modesty. Alas, there seems to be no convincing Israel that his conspiracy theory could become a reality. Take a look at the harebrained scheme his febrile imagination came up with:

Imagine if this unimaginable president seeks to muddle the results of close counts in the midterms. He could claim that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Russia’s Vladimir Putin cooked the outcome; encourage defeated Republicans not to accept defeat; demand that friendly state chief election officials take their time in determining a winner based on whatever baseless, unsubstantiated theories the president advances.

From this disputatious flux, disorder would result when Democrats try to assume control of the House on January 3, 2019. Israel asks, “What if Trump refuses to recognize the election of a House Democratic majority or the selection of a Democratic Speaker?”

Good question. Here’s my answer: Nothing. For a former congressional lawmaker, Israel seems to have forgotten the kind of basic civics we all learned in middle school. The legislative branch is a separate but equal branch from the executive. Trump can’t walk into Congress and start calling the shots. Unless, of course, he declares martial law.

But Israel doesn’t even bring up that prospect. He simply says Trump could ignore Congress, refusing to recognize legitimate power. But, again, so what? Congress doesn’t need the President’s permission to operate. And the President can’t pass legislation on his own.

Israel admits there are plenty of “’what happens’ and ‘what ifs'” with his scenario.  Then he asks, “But in this administration, what else is new?”

That’s some seriously specious reasoning and sophistry that Israel is better fit teaching a freshman philosophy class than opining in the pages of a Beltway digital tabloid. They aren’t arguments; they’re empty hand-waving.

Here’s a prediction: Nothing Steve Israel says will actually happen. And he’ll face no repercussions for getting his fever dreams published for the public.

Jim E. is a true political insider, with experience working both in Washington and outside in real America. Jim... More about Jim E

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