Here are some of my rather fanciful predictions. Don't take them too seriously - on the other hand, 2020 has had a habit of upsetting all the applecarts...
*Biden's rapey past will finally catch up with him, and he will be presented with his walking papers.
*The Democrats won't bother to hold a Convention, citing the danger of coronavirus. They will have a teleconference of Party Leaders instead.
*The Democrats will pick a nominee with 0 pledged delegates. Possibly a nominee who did not even run this year. As @annatar1914 suggests, Clinton could make it on the ticket. (Note: The Democratic Party is a private organization. It has no legal obligation to hold fair and transparent elections, nor to abide by their results.)
*The President could
legally dispense with elections
, at least in GOP-controlled states:
If the pandemic gets so severe that we cannot responsibly hold in-person elections, Congress should require states to allow no-excuse absentee balloting. But if Trump does not want to risk a loss at the polls, he can exploit a constitutional shortcut around free and fair elections. The president can ask Republican-controlled state legislatures to assign their electoral votes to him—without allowing any citizen to cast a ballot for president. This maneuver would constitute an appalling assault on democracy. But it would be legal.
As the 2016 election reminded the country, the president is chosen by the Electoral College, not the popular vote. There are 538 electors, and a candidate needs 270 of them to win. Currently, every state assigns electors to the candidate who won the popular vote statewide. (Two states add a twist that’s irrelevant here.) But the Constitution does not require states to assign their electors on the basis of the statewide vote. It does not even require a statewide vote. Rather, it explains that each state “shall appoint” its electors “in such manner as the Legislature thereof may direct.” In other words, each state legislature gets to decide how electors are appointed—and, by extension, who gets their votes.
Today, every state legislature has delegated this task to the people. But at first, state legislatures just did it themselves. In the first presidential election, for instance, the legislatures of Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, New Jersey, and South Carolina appointed electors directly. Eventually, every state moved toward the modern system. But the Supreme Court confirmed in 1892’s McPherson v. Blacker that states were free to revert to the old method, and in 2000’s Bush v. Gore, the court reiterated this point. The majority declared that the state legislature “may, if it so chooses, select the electors itself,” and retains authority to “take back the power to appoint electors” even after switching to a statewide vote.
This maneuver will require that he convince a sufficient number of GOP state legislatures to play along. How much would you bet they wouldn't?
The old world is dying, and the new world struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters. -Antonio Gramsci