Jimmy Carter warns that America's democracy is at risk, as nation teeters on brink of 'widening abyss'
Former President Jimmy Carter, fearing for the future of the American republic, held out hope that the Capitol riot would "shock the nation into addressing the toxic polarization that threatens our democracy." That hasn't happened.
Writing Thursday in The New York Times, the nation’s 39th president said too many people continue to promote the lie of a stolen election in 2020. They “have taken over one political party and stoked distrust in our electoral systems,” Carter wrote on the one-year anniversary of the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
Carter wrote that politicians “have leveraged the distrust they have created to enact laws that empower partisan legislatures to intervene in election processes.”
While not specifically citing ex-President Donald Trump or the Republican Party by name, Carter called out politicians in Texas, Florida and his home state of Georgia.
He added: “They seek to win by any means, and many Americans are being persuaded to think and act likewise, threatening to collapse the foundations of our security and democracy with breathtaking speed.”
The 97-year-old former president – one of an exclusive group of five men – called on all Americans to respect the rule of law and support reforms to promote accessible and transparent elections.
He also longed for less political polarization, including “civil conversations with family, friends and co-workers and standing up collectively to the forces dividing us.”
Carter closed by saying that “our great nation now teeters on the brink of a widening abyss. Without immediate action, we are at genuine risk of civil conflict and losing our precious democracy.”