How Presidential elections changed after 2017

(Excerpted from Professor Gib Edward, The Decline of the US Empire, Dugong Publishers, 2025.)

The big change in US Presidential election campaigns came as a surprise to nearly everyone. But it is nearly universally agreed that the change was a product of tensions in the early days of the Administration of President Ronald Dump.

The unexpectedness of Dump’s election, and the fact that he won the Electoral College despite being decisively defeated in the popular vote, contributed to the lack of the usual “honeymoon period” for new Presidents. All liberal politicians, many moderates, and even some conservatives questioned Dump’s ability to fill the role of President. Such doubts contributed to the early legislative defeat of Don’tcare, Dump’s attempt to “resent and reflate” the previous Administration’s health insurance plan.

But then someone in the White House recognized a crucial distinction: Dealing with people’s medical needs requires Congressional approval. Killing people does not.

This insight was whispered into President Dump’s ear as he was tweeting a piece of chocolate cake to Chinese President Sy Ginseng. The US President immediately broke off that message and instead tweeted instructions to the Air Force to “BOMB something! Syria, Iraq, Muslimistan – your choice.” The added remark that doing this would be “a piece of cake” may have been incorporated from the President’s previous, uncompleted, tweet.

The response, across the political board, was unanimous: “Presidential! He’s finally being Presidential! Call off the dogs! Give him whatever he wants!”

But as commentators of all persuasions soon pointed out, this experience showed that it would be much preferable to establish whether potential Presidents possessed the necessary qualifications before elections, rather than after. So, in early 2018, Congress overwhelmingly passed, and the President signed, the Proof of Presidentialness Act (PPA). This specified that, during the official primary campaign, all Presidential candidates (from either major party) receiving more than 10% support in polls would, in succession, be given command of the Air Force and CIA for one day, allowing them to demonstrate their Presidential resolve by bombing the country or countries they considered the greatest threat to American security or values.

As is well known, the PPA was hastily amended in mid-2019 when Batshit News charged that two of the Republicans planning to challenge President Dump, and all of the likely Democrat candidates, were secret Muslims who would take the opportunity to bomb Tel Aviv and/or Jerusalem. While insisting they did not believe Batshit’s charges, Congressional leaders of both parties immediately agreed to change the PPA to specify that the bombings to prove presidentialness could be directed only at Muslim majority countries.