I was kind of surprised that I didn’t hear more about this story than on a few mentions on some blogs and online news sources. From MSNBC:
American counterterrorism officials, citing what they call “alarming” intelligence about a possible Qaeda strike inside the United States this fall, are reviewing a proposal that could allow for the postponement of the November presidential election in the event of such an attack
This isn’t the first time that an administration has mulled over “postponing” or canceling an election. This is a lengthy article but do a search in it for “THE CANCELLATION OF THE 1972 ELECTIONS” .
In 1970 a rumor was printed in William Howard’s Newhouse News Service weekly gossip column about a Rand Corporation study done for the NIXON Administration to determine the feasibility of canceling the 1972 election if radicals threatened to disrupt it. The Wall Street Journal wrote on April 24, 1970, that rumors of the study were hard to spike. The New York Times reported: “Rumors were heard in April and spread quickly across the country that the Rand Corporation was preparing a secret study on the implications of cancellation of the 1972 election.” Henry S. Rowan of the Rand Corporation released this statement carried by The Wall Street Journal on May 13, 1970: “The Rand Corporation has not undertaken such a study. It does not contemplate making such a study, nor has it been approached by anyone with a proposal for such a study.”
Who knows how legitimate that study was but it is an interesting read. Of course, scaring the public into letting a leader seize power to protect against terror and to restore security is one of the oldest tricks in the book. I wish I could think of a good example of that happening.
(Thanks Paul for the Nixon link)