July 22, 2015

No Trump Card (Part 2)

Previously I mentioned that a Trump Candidacy would not be a good idea for the GOP and not necessarily a boon to conservative voters, as far as getting elected, and the implications of him winning.  Previously, I focused on the election portion of the reasons.  Now I'll look at the latter part of the equation.  All of the electability issues aside, suppose Trump succeeds and makes it to the Oval Office.  Then what?

My first thought is that he'll get to appoint a number of Supreme Court Justices. 1? 3? We're back into wild card territory again.  We need another Scalia on the court not a Sotomayor.  And my thinking is that given the Donald's history of coziness with liberals, I'd put money on him nominating a social-liberal justice over a Constitutional originalist, every time.  That alone makes the future of SCOTUS decisions a huge liberal win.  It makes him only marginally better than a Clinton or Sanders, and again, it's a roll of the dice and a prayer that conservatives get lucky with his nominee(s). That in turn makes him a dubious choice to be the GOP nominee.

I'd be more inclined to believe that Trump would really take a look at the federal debt and try to do something about it.  But building a wall on the Mexican border and getting Mexico to pay for it? Neither of those things are going to actually happen.  There is a not a strong enough national will for a wall.  And the only thing that will actually stop an inflow of illegal immigrants from Mexico, is a prosperous Mexico. Period.

The next issue I forsee is gridlock.  Trump will have alienated probably almost as many Republicans as Democrats in the run-up to his presidency that any of his ideas won't make it into the House, let alone out of it.  Nothing will get done legislatively.  That has the potential to make Trump a lame duck from Day One, or else it will put conservatives in the uncomfortable position of supporting massive amounts of Executive Orders in order to avoid a do-nothing presidency. Or else we'll have to settle for a do nothing presidency.  That won't sit well with voters who sent Trump to Washington, and it won't sit well with Trump.

His brashness on foreign relations would be a double edged sword.  Yes, he would likely get the attention of America's enemies and he would not be one to take any crap from China, Russia or Iran. But he's also likely to act overly quickly, with a hammer, in some situations where such an approach is not required.  He's likely to get America out of treaties and deals that are not in the national interest.  But will he know which ones those are? Conversely, any new deals brokered by Trump are likely to be beneficial to the U.S., but given the gridlock he'd create, there is a distinct possibility nothing would be ratified by the Senate.

While the election cycle is just beginning, there are a lot of unanswered questions with respect to Mr. Trump that portend possible issues with his presidency.  Where does he stand on national defense? What are his views on energy policy? Taxes? We can guess that while they'd be pro-America, which is a step up from the current pretender-in-chief, what does pro-America mean?  I can see Trump playing to the media and talking about a solar-friendly future, and while supporting domestic oil, gas and nuclear power, also wasting a lot of money on inefficient solar power and wind turbines in a Don Quixote-esque attempt to be a pioneer in energy and embalzon his legacy with the notion of being the real forward-thinking visionary president America needed. Let's not forget, Trump has an ego.  He wants to be a media-darling, just like John McCain did/does and that makes him succeptible to outlandish stupidity at times.  As we've seen, outlandish stupidity in a president is bad for America.

In summary, Trump does bring some positives to the GOP, the race and the potential presidency. While I'm not personally discounting him as someone I'd support, I'm certainly not ready to hop on the polling bandwagon and scuttle all the other candidates.  Give him time and either he'll hone his skills, or talk himself out of the nomination. 

People complain about having too many GOP candidates to choose from this cycle.  This is not a bad problem to have. The Democrats are going to have Hillary and Bernie Sanders. If they don't like either, what choice do they have but to sit out the primaries or vote Republican.  Extra candidates are a luxury we have on the Republican side. It gives us options and we have some time to consider our preferences in relation to those options. Enjoy it while it lasts. Trump, despite his polling surge, is still only one of those 16 options, and he's definitely not the worst choice.

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