As far-right-wingers fret over the loss of conservative values, they’ve been plotting a fix. Many of the most radical among the right may now be hoping for a “Red Caesar” to save the day. Here’s the full story.
He Wrote the ‘Book’
Michael Anton of the Claremont Institute came to political prominence in 2016 when he wrote an essay called “The Flight 93 Election.” It quickly became a far-right, Trump-thumping manifesto.
Charge the Cockpit
In that essay, Anton called for conservatives to forget about their reservations over electing Donald Trump as President.
It was time to “charge the cockpit” or die, Anton said.
They Were Heroes
From the title to that indindiary quote, the entire essay was a play on Flight 93 during the 9/11 attacks.
That’s the flight where passengers staged an uprising against the plane’s hijackers and stormed the cockpit to fly the craft into the ground.
Time for Conservatives to Rise Up
The analogy Anton was trying to draw wasn’t hard to figure out.
Traditional American values were under attack from the political left, he said, and it was time for conservatives to take charge.
Ends Justify the Means
If that meant hitching their wagons to Trump’s wagon, noxious fumes and all, it would be worth it.
A Sign of the Times
It was a message that resonated with the far right, and it was the type of sentiment that eventually got Trump elected, even if most voters had never heard of Anton or read his essay.
But after Joe Biden defeated Trump in the 2020 election, and especially after the failed coup attempt on January 6, 2021, the despair among right-wingers ratcheted up several notches.
Anton Wasn’t Finished
In the years since Trump’s ouster, and even in the face of his mounting political challenges, another Anton idea has been gaining traction.
Back in that 2016 essay, Anton mentioned a concept he called “Caesarism,” which he called a “form of one-man rule: halfway … between monarchy and tyranny.”
He Had Plenty More to Say
As the 2020 election approached and the pandemic and racial tension clouded Trump’s re-election efforts, Anton expounded on the idea of Caesarism in a book titled The Stakes
Ruled by the Fringe
In other writings, Anton has suggested that the United States peaked in 1965 and has been in a tailspin since then.
Today, he says, the country is ruled by a fringe group set on bending society’s opinions to match their own.
A One-Man Fix
The only way out, according to the doctrine of Caesarism, is to bestow power on a single man who would enforce old-time customs and ideas of right and wrong.
Trump Not Unbeatable
There are signs that more and more members of the far right are starting to embrace that idea now that they know Trump actually can lose an election.
Can’t Touch Biden
And they’re also realizing that their attempts to undercut Biden and gain support for removing him from office have fallen short.
All Hail Red Caesar?
So now, according to Damon Linker from the University of Pennsylvania, many are pinning their hopes on the emergence of a “Red Caesar.”
Better Call Don!
Trump is the preferred candidate for most of the right-wingers, since he has already built so much “red” support and certainly seems like he’d be comfortable taking up the role of a modern-day Caesar.
Playing with Fire
There are obvious dangers in such an approach to government, Rinker says.
Giving heavy doses of power to any one person is always playing with fire, for example.
But Rinker says the trouble could go much deeper than most can even imagine.
Dictator for Life
Many proponents of Caesarism, for example, already support suspending the next election, in 2028, if Trump manages to return to power.
They Know Not What They Do
It’s all in the name of law and order, they say.
Whether they realize it could also spell the end of democracy as we know it is open for interpretation.
The post Speculations Arise Over Trump’s 2028 Election Strategy and Its Potential Impact first appeared on The Public Slate.
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / mark reinstein. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.