Current Affairs

Some Deus Ex Machina Scenarios For The Election

Jason Adam Katzenstein peers into his multiverse scrying glass to bring us some possible election outcomes. With illustrations!

Two weeks before Election Day, Comey writes another letter. This one details all the way in which our norms cannot take another four years of Donald Trump. Politicians on both sides of the aisle are moved to tears, and come together to introduce the Comey Bill, which precludes anybody who disrespects John McCain from ever holding office. 


After Joe Biden suspends his campaign for the last month (to play fair now that Trump has Covid), the election results in a dead tie, and the Supreme Court appoints Dick Cheney as president. Green Day puts out another album that pulls no punches. 


After deciding it’s only fair that Trump gets to keep being president—on account of how it was so hard for him to perform his duties while sick—Republicans respond with gratitude: NOW they’ll definitely work with Democrats. 


Confirming every liberal’s strongly held suspicion, right after declaring himself the winner, Trump pulls off his wig to reveal the face of Vladmir Putin on the back of his head! Only a ragtag team of Pete Buttigieg, Preet Bharara, and the hosts of Pod Save America can team up to raise enough money from the American people to build a legal case so ironclad that Trump/Putin goes directly to prison. 


Nate Silver releases the cold, hard, unassailable data, which proves beyond any reasonable doubt that Trump lost the electoral college. The armed MAGA shitheads throw up their hands; they are defeated. 


Mitt Romney does something. Not clear what.


Joe Biden appeals to the conscience of every Republican. politicians from both sides of the aisle are moved to tears, and come together to agree that they’ll honor the real election results. Bipartisanship triumphs again.


The American people vote for Republicans to not brazenly steal the election. The Republicans honor this new vote and, once again, voting saves the day. 


Aliens have been a thing, right? They do something. Maybe with Mitt Romney. 


The Lincoln Project uses their firsthand knowledge of stealing the 2000 election to offer expert advice on how to avoid having this one stolen too (sample advice: don’t “hang chad.”) Regardless of the outcome or the documented level of theft, they will pocket a cool million in consulting fees.


SNL does a skit so devastating, an Alec Baldwin impression so scathing, that Trump announces he will not seek re-election after all.


The Deus Ex Machina scenario itself: rather than trust the election to the whim of “voters,” who might not even have college degrees, our beloved technocrats build the perfect president-selecting machine.

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