Though I possess neither crystal ball nor psychic powers, I believe anyone who is paying attention can foresee the immediate future. Gazing across the void of a few days into 2020, here’s what I see:

Freelance journalist Edgar Allen Beem lives in Brunswick. The Universal Notebook is his personal, weekly look at the world around him.

Donald Trump will face impeachment, but he will not be removed from office. There aren’t enough Republican senators with integrity to do so.

Not a single GOP senator will vote to remove Trump, but at least one Democrat will cross the line and vote not to do so.

Joe Biden will emerge as the Democratic candidate, but Trump will narrowly be re-elected because progressive supporters of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren will have trouble getting excited about the moderate Biden.

No matter how it comes out, polls will get the election results wrong.

If, however, polls show Biden ahead in June, Justice Clarence Thomas will announce his retirement so that Trump can appoint another conservative to the Supreme Court before he leaves office.


If Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg is forced to retire due to ill health, Democrats, despite not having a majority in the Senate, will do everything in their power to prevent Trump from appointing her replacement, including a version of the Merrick Garland Defense mastered by Mitch McConnell.

The results of the 2020 presidential election will be close enough that the election ends up in court.

There will be ample evidence that Russian, China and possibly Iran all meddled in the U.S. election in support of Trump, but Republicans will insist that millions of illegal immigrants voted for Biden.

Sen. Susan Collins, having voted to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and against removing Trump, will face the toughest election challenge of her political career, but she will narrowly prevail over Democrat Sara Gideon.

Rep. Jared Golden will narrowly retain his seat in Congress, but which of the three Trump lovers will win the June primary to challenge him is unclear. Republicans will renew their efforts to repeal rank choice voting.

The University of Southern Maine will not change its name back to the University of Maine at Portland, the name it was going by when I graduated in 1971.


The New England Patriots will not play in Super Bowl LIV on Feb. 3. The Baltimore Ravens will face the New Orleans Saints and the Saints will win.

Pats’ quarterback Tom Brady, aka TB12 and the GOAT, will announce his retirement on his 43rd birthday, Aug. 3.

Maine Red Claws’ 7-foot, 5-inch center Tacko Fall will play a few games with the Boston Celtics, but in a day and age when 7-footers dribble, drive and shoot from the outside like guards, the affable giant will prove too slow for the NBA.

Overpriced pitcher David Price will be traded so the Red Sox can afford to sign superstar rightfielder Mookie Betts to a long-term contract. Centerfielder Jackie Bradley Jr., however, will be dealt to another team, much to my consternation.

Scotland will vote to leave the United Kingdom but will stay in the European Union.

Another member of the British royal family will be engulfed in scandal, leading to calls to end the monarchy as an expensive embarrassment.

Self-driving cars and delivery drones will be abandoned as the lousy ideas they always have been. Really, driverless cars and parcels dropping from the sky? What could possibly go wrong?

Happy New Year!

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