In the immediate aftermath of last night’s presidential debate, TV commentators expressed their shock at Donald Trump’s refusal to say that, whatever the results of the elections, he would accept them. But should these commentators have been so shocked? What if the elections really are rigged? What should Trump have said?
To be sure, there were far better ways for Trump to reply to moderator Chris Wallace’s question, satisfying Wallace’s concerns while raising his own concerns (which reflect the concerns of many other Americans).
For example, Trump could have said:
“Absolutely, without question, if the electoral process is fair and legal, I will accept the results, whatever the outcome. And should I lose, which I don’t expect to, I will urge my supporters to accept our loss with dignity.
“But I have a question for you, Chris, and for Hillary and for the American people as well. What if it could be demonstrated in a court of law that the election was rigged? What if there was massive voter fraud? Would it be fair to the American people for me to accept the election results without a fight? Would it be just? If the American people voted to put me into office and the election was stolen from me and from them, what would be the right course of action?
“Chris, what do you think? Hillary, what do you think? And people of America, what do you think?”
( Read the rest of this spot on commentary here.)