While last night's VeeP debate was all feces and frolics, UBS' Art Cashin and his 'Friends of Fermentation' recently drifted onto the topic of the Presidential Election - and the conversation was not what he calls "reassuring" as they move from margins of victory to result-challenges and banana-republic like street demonstrations and riots.
Via Art Cashin, UBS: Could This Be A "Dangerous" Election?
The Friends of Fermentation drifted onto the Presidential Election at a recent non-plenary session. The conversation was not what you might call "reassuring".
The strong consensus was that whoever wins the election, it would be best if they won by a significant margin. The feeling was that the nation is so tightly and tensely divided that a close election could well inspire challenges to its validity.
Those challenges might take the form of an almost endless series of court cases like Florida in 2000. That could delay swearing in the President or some Senators or Congressmen.
But, the challenges might not stop there. The FoF discussion worried that the challenges might spill out into the streets, perhaps starting as demonstrations and quickly devolving into riot-like occasions.
Could we be seeing the end of the American tradition of the orderly transfer of power? Could we be slipping into banana republic mode?
The heart of this discussion is the acrimonious tone that has evolved and grown in our political exchanges. All the "us and them" and class warfare posturing sets a dangerous backdrop to a close election.
Even the polls, which have been basically frozen for months, suggest a cement-like partisanship in the land.
What would happen if this election wound up back in the Supreme Court?
I'll try to get the FoF to talk about something less partisan….maybe the World Series.