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The Global Risk of the US Election

Never before has a US presidential election posed such a grave potential threat to the peace, prosperity, and stability of the rest of the world. A crisis following a disputed result in November would be a disaster, and it would come just when the world urgently needs to address an array of shared problems.

BERLIN – Unlike in Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days, the modern world’s journey over the next 80 days will be more of a slog than an adventure. But it will culminate in an event of global and historic consequence.

In less than three months, the United States will hold its 59th quadrennial presidential election. Because America is still more powerful economically and militarily than its two leading competitors (Russia and China) combined, its elections are always globally significant. But never before has one posed such an acute threat to the rest of the world.

There is no question that the re-election of President Donald Trump would endanger both the US and the world. Moreover, there is ample reason to fear that a close election could drive the US into a deep, prolonged constitutional crisis, and perhaps into civil violence.

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