Democrats’ Legitimacy Gambit

US
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks outside the Supreme Court building on the day of oral arguments in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, in Washington, D.C., December 1, 2021. (Jonathan Ernst/Reuters)
If you make a government institution’s legitimacy contingent on whether it gives you what you want, you should expect your opponents to respond in kind.




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W
hen is an election legitimate? When Democrats win.

Does anybody remember the run-up to the 2016 presidential election? For months, Donald Trump and his Republican allies were lectured by Democrats that, no matter what, they had to “accept the outcome.” Democrats were comfortable making that demand, because they were confident that the outcome would favor them — that Mrs. Clinton would win the election. When Mrs. Clinton choked and, comically and improbably, Trump was elected president of these United States, it was Democrats who rejected the legitimacy of the vote, charging — absurdly — that it had been thrown by trolls

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