by Greg Walcher, E&E Legal Senior Policy Fellow
As appearing in the Daily Sentinel
Election aftermaths are euphoric for some, depressing for others, and a relief that it’s over for many. Some friends are ecstatic that they finally got rid of President Trump. Others are upset about that, some insisting that it isn’t over, pending the fraud investigations. Still others are so angry at the outcome that they are considering moving away — leaving the U.S.A. in search of some freer place, saying they do not wish to live under the socialist rule they are sure is coming.
It reminds me of something that happens before every election. Someone always threatens to leave if so-and-so is elected. After Trump’s 2016 election, author Audrey Edwards was quoted saying, “I did not want to be in America ruled by Donald Trump.” She moved to Paris for a short time, but then returned home. Before that election, comedian Jon Stewart and actor Samuel L. Jackson said they would move to Canada if Trump was elected. So did Mylie Cyrus, Snoop Dog, George Lopez, Lena Dunham, and Barbra Streisand. They weren’t the first. Robert Altman threatened to move if Bush was elected in 2000. Stephen Baldwin said he’d move away if Obama was elected in 2008. Tina Fey and Susan Sarandon were going to leave if Romney won in 2012. Rush Limbaugh said he’d move to Costa Rica if Obamacare passed. This year, rockers Bruce Springsteen and Tommy Lee both said they were leaving if Trump was re-elected. Whew — we dodged a bullet there.
They all ignored a key point. Americans are citizens, not subjects. America was never “ruled” by Donald Trump, Barack Obama, or anyone else. As Alexander Hamilton explained, “Here, sir, the people govern.”