Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Oh, Law

Law, you are so complex and ...sly. Let me count the ways in which you could cause my brain to explode. 1. 2. 3. wait for it. 4. etc.

You know this presidential election situation we have going on? this plan to elect the president of the United States? The American States. The ones protected by the Constitution, which is laws and stuff. yeah, well, let's say that someone is elected (and they will be) on Nov 4th. hooray, for the candidates supporters, right? wrong. very wrong. and the law says so (brain countdown).

there's a little thing called the Electoral Vote to consider. and this will happen on Dec 15th. i know, i know. why so long between the general election and the day the electoral votes are in? dude, shut up. this is the law we're talking about (cognizance failing).

Once the electoral votes are in they should be delivered to the president of the Senate of these United Places by Dec 24th. presumably for some festive reasons? or perhaps the pony express just can't get to Washington before that with all the holiday cards to deliver? why we never had the Arabian racehorse express is beyond me. but that's an entirely separate thing.

So, the president of the Senate, who is the vice president, has the votes in his hand ...or hands–the law doesn't s specify (go figure) – and they are immediately given to Congress for the Great Counting (my title , not official–unfortunate). and within hours your president-elect can receive your hoorays. right? wrong again. the law says so (brnai expadning).

Actually, its another couple of weeks until the Congress pulls themselves up from their drunken, holiday stupors and with bleary eyes snatch the votes from the vice president with grouchy grunts of 'yeah, yeah, yeah, we got it . we got it.' They then proceed to count the electoral votes and official proclaim the winner of the presidential election. This day is Jan 6th. two months have gone by since you cast your vote. two long months. two months of lawful uncertainty. two months where anything can happen. And this is what I'm really plugging away at. two months of pure, sweet , nail-biting danger.

somebody could die.

morbid? maybe. but this is interesting stuff. if you're interested in this kind of stuff. because until the Congress counts the electoral votes there really is no official president-elect. and until the states turn in their electoral votes they could decide to vote for humpty-dumpty. meaning: if the winner of the general election dies from any cause at all between Nov 4th and Dec 15th the whole already-garbled process becomes infinitely more garbled. All bets are off. Floating Casino. Big boat. Open waters. (mayday)

Now, if the general election winner dies between Dec 15th and Jan 6th we can then ride a blustery tack into the murky bay of the 20th Amendment. problem solved. ...No, it isn't. Thank you, Law. Nothing is concrete because the states can still change their electoral vote since the votes haven't been counted yet. But, also, the Congress could decide that the Dec 15th votes should be legitimate. Or, everyone could band together and decide that, yes, Humpty Dumpty would be a fine, fine choice after all. there is just no ruling one way or another.

The law says so (anbiannn eakxrdgnid).

Dumpty/Dum and Dee '08

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