A Quadrillion, Trillion or Billion To One Long Shot Falls Short

Some novelist somewhere is writing a book about how malevolent forces in a political party used a worldwide pandemic to throw a U.S. Presidential election in four swing states under its control.

When voters caught on, they went to the courts in these four states – lets say, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – and demanded justice. But the courts refused to act. And so did the state legislatures. (Skeptics said it was because they were controlled by the “Winning Party.)

The “Losing Party,” which seemingly was caught unawares, was ostensibly outraged that its Presidential candidate was robbed of a solid victory.  

In truth, the leaders didn’t care much for their loud-mouth Presidential candidate. He was an outsider, always making trouble, and his alma mater is second-tier Ivy League. More importantly, the corruption in the four states didn’t affect down ballot voting and the “Losing Party” actually picked up many Congressional seats and grew much stronger. The leaders of the “Losing Party” stayed mostly quiet.

Point of No Return

At the point of no return, the hero of this tale, The Lone Star state of Texas,  filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Supreme Court, the highest court in the land. It argued the four rogue states had invalidated the will of voters of the state of Texas and the country as a whole. There was no other forum for redress, Texas argued.

Seventeen other states and 126 members of Congress stepped up to support Texas’s lawsuit.

One thing striking about the court papers filed by Texas was an estimate by a recognized expert. He said the statistical probability of the Winning Party’s Presidential candidate winning the popular vote in the four rogue swing states independently was less than one in a quadrillion, or 1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000.  The odds of him winning the four states collectively dropped to less than one in a quadrillion to the fourth power.

(That estimate was derided by the Winning Party and its media so, to be fair, let’s just say the expert made a huge mistake and the odds were actually less than one in a trillion to the fourth power or one in billion to the fourth power.)


Now comes the peak of the story arc:

Will the nine justices on the U.S. Supreme Court find the courage to step out of their comfort zone into the political maelstrom?  As Texas has argued, if they won’t protect the union from rogue states that rig an election, who will?   

The stakes literally couldn’t be higher.

This is about who will lead the United States both nationally and internationally for the next four years. But most importantly, it’s about whether half of the American public can continue to have faith in the one person- one vote rule, which is at the very heart of America’s democracy.

The founders of the country made the U.S. Supreme Court for a moment just like this one. All of these justices have lifetime tenure and can’t be fired. They are free to do what is right.

The Court issues a brief order stating that Texas lacks legal standing to bring the case. “Texas has not demonstrated a judicially cognizable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections,” the unsigned order said. Two of the nine justices dissented, arguing the court is required to allow states to file cases before it. Even they took no position on Texas’s argument.

Keen observers will notice the Supreme Court’s order misses the point. Texas is not concerned about what another state does in its elections; It is concerned about how the actions of the rogue states impact voters in Texas and the U.S. Country as a whole.

It turns out the effort to vindicate the Presidential election was the quadrillion, trillion or billion to one long shot and it fell short.

It is many weeks later and an editor at a New York publishing house is reading the manuscript. She shakes her head. “ Who’s gonna believe that?” she says, tossing the book onto the slush pile.

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