March 6, 2017

Trump Woes: This too shall pass

The Democrat knives are out for president Trump, but that's not news.  They have been out for him since he defeated perennial non-contender Hillary Clinton in November.  Indeed, the knives have been out for Trump since he won the nomination. It's no surprise that everything, legitimate or fake or in between, is fair game as far as they are concerned.   It seems that Democrats have figured out president Trump's weakness.  He's a counter puncher.  It's not that they expect that his counterpunching will die down or be effective.  Quite the contrary, they hope it keeps up.  

Delay.  That's their game.  Donald Trump came into office with a basket full of promises and as everyone knows, the first 100 days are viewed as critical to a presidency.  So if Trump is busy counter-punching, which he seemingly cannot resist doing, he's not focused on his goals.  Face it, if his goal is jobs and a booming economy, the Democrats hope he fails because that would mean yet more electoral success for Republicans in 2018 and a second Trump term in 2020.  What matters is the first two years.

What's happening is pretty obvious. Protests are subsiding from the headlines now and Democrats are looking for something to keep up the momentum.  Trump  = Russia, bizarrely is their weak ploy to carry it forward.  Jeff Sessions will not be found to have engaged in any wrongdoing.  But the hope Democrats have is that by using Trump's own tactics of starting brush fires and moving on to the next one while the president's team has to engage in putting the fire out.  That's a Trump move.  They are trying to grind down any potential Trump momentum by using his own tactics against him.  Clever. Well, maybe.

Conservatives, catch your breath, the window on the Russia stuff is pretty narrow actually.  The outer edge of the histrionics is the summer.  People will start thinking about vacations and baseball, and BBQs etc.  That affords president Trump a breather and afterwards, in September, when people start tuning in to what passes for political discourse these days, they'll be more interested in what's been done than what's been said, implied or slandered.  

More importantly Trump still has options.  He can ramp up his game, which might work, or he can change his game.  He can ignore the brush fires and move forward at an even brisker pace and force the Democrats back onto defense, which is where Trump is at his most effective.  That could end the current seeming malaise in president Trump's effectiveness as the president much more quickly than the summer.  That requires one thing - Congress needs to keep up with the president.  That's not happening.  Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan need to step up the pace - NOW.  This type of majority for Republicans is a once in a century deal.  They can squander it by moving at a snail's pace or they can increase the chance of extending it, by, you know, getting something done.

Here's the rub - the Republican establishment might want to get the good Trump and delay the bad Trump.  For them, the good Trump is tax changes, SCOTUS nominees, budgetary restraint to some degree, military improvement and maybe regulatory reform.  The bad is a border wall, and tighter control on immigration and more and more it seems, rolling back Obamacare.

The GOP seem to be playing a game with president Trump, we√®re going to stall everything until you get in line and stop being a populist.  The Democrats are heading into a civil war, but on the Republican side, the civil war appears not to be over yet.  If Trump realizes this perhaps he can work something out with the Republicans because inaction hurts the GOP all around.  It hurts president Trump and the GOP in Congress.  It's bad for business as the saying goes. Perhaps it's time for conservative grassroots to start amping up the pressure on Congress.  Where's the Tea Party when you need them?

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