Trump’s win will be blamed on the FBI Director’s letter and, especially if that inquiry turns out to have been based on nothing significant, his election will be seen as inherently illegitimate. Our already severe political divisions will be greatly exacerbated. America’s standing in the global community will be instantaneously diminished.

Then, after taking office as the most hated and least respected president in the modern era, Trump’s first order of business will be filling Antonin Scalia’s Supreme Court seat. After running with a promise to nominate a true-blue conservative from a pre-approved list, Trump will be shocked to find out that Democrats are unwilling to rubber stamp his first nominee. With around 50 votes in the Senate, they will easily filibuster that person with no fear of a highly unpopular president whose mere election has set off civil unrest.

Trump will then have two choices. He can follow his normal instincts of negotiation and concede to his liberal sensibilities by nominating someone whom conservatives (other than maybe Sean Hannity) will see as a clear betrayal. Or, he will be forced to allow the court to remain in 4-4 split with his most important campaign promise to an already highly skeptical conservative base remaining unfulfilled indefinitely. Either way, Democrats, with the news media blowing the wind at their back, will, to mix a metaphor, have Trump by the balls.