We Can’t Assume Trump Won’t Return in 2024, We Have to Guarantee It

https://www.gettyimages.com/detail/news-photo/outgoing-u-s-president-donald-trump-and-first-lady-melania-news-photo/1297464406?adppopup=true

Honestly right now things do not look so good for Trump. He was just the first president to be impeached twice, many of his former allies seem to be shaky at best in their relationship to him, and he cannot even post his thoughts on social media. It would seem as if his political career is over. Most likely it is. However, we should not put all our faith in that assumption. The Congress needs to guarantee that he can never return through the Senate impeachment trial.

The reality is that people have short memories. This is particularly true in regard to a demagogues like Trump who likes to throw out a lot of chaos to always keep the story changing. Remember in 2016 when everyone condemned Trump for his Access Hollywood Tape and then voted for him just a few weeks later?Or remember the Republicans getting really angry at him for something offensive he did and then come to his rescue a week later? True, the insurrection at the Capitol might top the list of his offenses, but people forget. This will especially be the case as the right’s anger grows at Biden and the Democratic Congress (no matter what they do). There will be some serious historical revisionism and a fawning over the days of Trump.

He also still has a base that has a cultish following to him, so that would put him near the top of the Republican presidential list if he did decide to run. Though there is a chance some of that cult following could fade, there is also a chance that it could strengthen as we move away from this last few pathetic weeks in office.

When Hitler was arrested after his first attempted coup, I am sure the common wisdom was that there was no way he would ever come to power in the German government. That was a tragic mistake. Our nation cannot afford to have Trump as president again, and honestly we cannot afford to even have him run again. His very presence would just rip the country even further apart than it is right now.

Trump belongs in jail for many of his criminal offenses, but especially for what he incited on January 6th and the broader undermining of our democracy post-election. The criminal charges may or may not come; however, our Congress needs to ensure that Trump can never come to power again and that he will never hold elected office again. They can do this. It will just take a little bit of courage to rid our republic of the possibility of this toxic individual taking power again.

I am an education professor in South Carolina with an emphasis in immigrant rights and peace education