The great American experiment in democracy will survive Trump’s best efforts to end it


This op-ed originally appeared in the SCMP on 11/2/20.


Illustration: Craig Stephens

With only days left before the US presidential election, fears are growing of voter intimidation, drawn-out legal challenges to vote counts, and even the potential for political violence. These concerns are usually reserved for struggling democracies around the world, not a country long considered the leader of the free world.

That leadership position has been thrown into question as the US has withdrawn from a number of multilateral engagements and favoured a myopic nationalism rather than the internationalist orientation the country had followed since the end of World War II. There’s a lot more at stake in this election than just who becomes the next president. Democracy itself is on the ballot.

In far too many places, political freedom is an exception rather than the norm. Over the past 14 years, it has been declining according to Freedom House research. The reasons are many, but the results are the same – the rule of law is weakening in high-, medium-, and low-income countries around the world. The US is not immune to this trend.

. . . for the full op-ed head to the SCMP.


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