“This is not a ‘Law & Order’ episode where everything is neatly wrapped up in 60 minutes.’”

— Jenna Ellis, legal adviser to President Trump, at Rudy Giuliani’s news conference on supposed voter fraud, explaining why they were not sharing any more evidence of their wild claims about voter fraud

But if it were an episode of “Law & Order” ...

***

V/O: In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two separate yet equally important groups: The police, who investigate crime, and the district attorneys, who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories.

[DUN-DUN!]

DETECTIVE OLIVIA BENSON: Stop! Put your hands where I can see them!

[RUDY GIULIANI drops a piece of paper on the floor.]

GIULIANI: That is exactly what the person in this affidavit says she said to the people counting ballots at her precinct, which is why we cannot count any of the ballots from Wayne County if we want this election to be fair!

BENSON: You’re telling me you don’t want any ballots from Detroit to count? Doesn’t that disenfranchise a huge number of people?

TRUMP LAWYER SIDNEY POWELL: What would disenfranchise the most people would be an election where Donald Trump was not immediately declared the winner.

BENSON: Stop. We’ve heard enough.

***

[INT. – PRECINCT. BENSON brings a VOTER a cup of tea.]

VOTER: I can’t believe they would try to just overturn the results of the entire election like that.

BENSON: I promise you, I will not let them get away with it.

VOTER: I know they are very incompetent and it seems like their plan is unlikely to work, but what if the election hinged on results in only one state? They can’t just — blatantly try to subvert our whole democracy like this. Has any Republican in Congress said anything?

[BENSON looks hopefully over at DETECTIVE ELLIOT STABLER. He shrugs.]

BENSON: I’m sure they will soon.

***

[INT. – PRECINCT. LATER.]

DETECTIVE FIN TUTUOLA: You’re telling me that these guys were trying to overturn the election? The one we all voted in?

DETECTIVE JOHN MUNCH: I didn’t vote.

CAPTAIN CRAGEN: No, it’s okay. They were just trying to. They didn’t succeed. You can stand down.

BENSON: Probably.

STABLER: What?

BENSON: Probably won’t succeed. I just got a call. There are state legislators from Michigan flying into D.C. now to talk to the president about not certifying the results.

STABLER: To talk to him? Why? What’s he going to say to them that can change the results?

MUNCH: So much for the first lady’s anti-bullying campaign.

CRAGEN: It’ll be fine.

BENSON: Captain, these voters need justice!

CRAGEN: They’re bad at it.

[CRAGEN retreats to his office and shuts the door.]

TUTUOLA: Wait a minute. You’re telling me that if they attempt a coup, but it doesn’t go through, we’re not supposed to worry about it?

BENSON: Probably doesn’t go through.

[STABLER rubs the back of his neck.]

STABLER: It won’t go through.

TUTUOLA: You’re telling me that if you try to do a crime, but you aren’t very good at it, there’s no consequences?

STABLER: I’m sure that isn’t what they mean.

TUTUOLA: You’re telling me that you can just attempt to overturn the results of a democratic election, and we, the American people, are supposed to just sit there and say, “Oh, this is fine, they’re not very GOOD at it”?

MUNCH: The American people are sheep.

***

[INT. – COURTROOM]

JUDGE: On the first, second and third counts, how do you plead?

SQUIRRELLY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: My client pleads not guilty, your honor.

JUDGE: On what grounds?

SQUIRRELLY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: On the grounds that my client is very incompetent.

ALEX CABOT: Objection!

JUDGE: Sustained. Do you have a real defense?

SQUIRRELLY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You don’t understand. My client tried to do the crime, yes, but my client did not succeed, and furthermore, it was very embarrassing for everyone to watch because my client’s hair dye was melting.

CABOT: Objection again! Your honor! This is not actually a defense! And while we sit here, they are still attempting to do the same crime!

SQUIRRELLY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: No, you don’t understand. They’re very bad at it.

JUDGE: I don’t —

SQUIRRELLY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: So bad.

***

[BENSON and STABLER are getting little blue paper cups of coffee outside the courthouse.]

STABLER: I’m confused. People are allowed to just do crimes now?

BENSON: I told you. If they’re bad at them.

STABLER: The president can just try to overturn the results of an election in broad daylight —

BENSON: Abetted by a lot of elected Republicans. [She pulls out a flask of alcohol and empties it into her coffee.] A lot.

STABLER: — and nobody says anything? Because he’s very bad at it and they don’t think it’s going to work? So we’re just gonna pretend it didn’t happen? That makes me angry.

BENSON: Most things make you angry, Elliot.

[STABLER punches a wall.]

BENSON: But in this case, you are correct. Anyway, he’s talking to them now.

STABLER: I’m not going to sit back and let these clowns do something that goes against everything we stand for as a nation, just because they seem incompetent enough! I’m going to do something!

BENSON: There’s nothing you can do, Elliot.

STABLER: It shouldn’t be up to state and local officials to have to resist this kind of pressure from the president! Why isn’t Congress standing up to him? If we can’t try to stop people who are literally in the midst of blatantly, openly trying to undermine our entire democracy, then what the hell are we even doing?

[BENSON finishes her drink. Mournful guitar riff.]

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