Combined with a Capitol insurrection that would frighten more than 147 legislators to overturn the Electoral College, an acting AG replaced by a Trump crony could have fronted a successful coup d’état. This does explain the placement of various “acting” Trump appointees at DoD in the closing months, as if there was some expectation of “friendly” military and police participants in the insurrection.
Two current or former chairs of Federalist Society practice groups were intimately involved in Trump’s failed coup: John Eastman and, we now know, Jeffrey Clark.
The Capitol mob didn’t come out of nowhere. It was a response to the concerted attack on 2020’s election results crafted by elite right-wing politicians, academics, and attorneys. No law professor played a bigger role in Donald Trump’s plot to overturn the election than John Eastman. As the president’s actual attorneys backed away from his coup, Eastman rushed in to fill the void, attempting to bolster the scheme with incoherent legal theories. When Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton urged the Supreme Court to overturn the election by nullifying millions of votes, it was Eastman who intervened on Trump’s behalf to endorse Paxton’s suit. When Trump exhorted Vice President Mike Pence to award him a second term by unilaterally disqualifying electoral votes, it was Eastman who advised Pence that he could, indeed, throw the election to Trump. And when Trump needed a putative legal scholar to lend credence to his pre-insurrection rally, he brought out Eastman to deliver a speech alongside Rudy Giuliani, ringleader of the president’s efforts to steal the election.Daily Kos finagling a coup: the US was closer to the end of democracy than previously thought