This entire article is based on speculation; speculation whose foundation is history. The result is not a good one for America. Let’s explore.
I still see the most likely outcome for the Trump presidency to be a resignation under intense pressure and disgrace ala Richard Nixon. If I had to guess a time I would say 2019. I expect the Democrats to have control of the House by then and they will impeach Trump after the Mueller report and information unearthed by subpoenas issued by Democratic controlled House Committees. My timing aside, if this happens before the 2020 elections Mike Pence (who doesn’t seem to be a target of the investigations at this point) would be the new president and most likely the 2020 GOP nominee.
Under that scenario we have a replay of the 1976 Ford-Carter matchup. The reality is that the Republican brand would be so damaged that almost anyone with a “D” after their name could win in 2020. That was what happened in 1976. Jimmy Carter may well be the finest man ever to occupy the Oval Office but he certainly was an ineffective President.
If history repeats itself and a less than top quality administrator (especially a Washington outsider which would appeal to voters) is elected in 2020 there is a very good chance they prove to be ineffective. That would trigger the American electorate to fall back on their desire for change, even if it is for change’s sake. That would open the gates for a charismatic Republican in 2024.
I know I get a lot of pushback, even from Democrats, but I still contend that Ronald Reagan did more enduring harm to America than any President before or since. Trump may take that position away from him before it is over; he certainly is making a grand effort. Unlike Trump there is no evidence that Reagan was running a skimming and scam operation where he personally benefited. However, Reagan was a Teflon president who openly broke or disregarded laws to achieve his agenda. The fact that Reagan stayed this side of prison bars is a testament to his likeable personality, sense of humor (plastic or not) and personal popularity (none of which Trump has). It also may have been aided by a nation still stung by Nixon and disappointed in Carter.
I want Trump out for the sake of America and the integrity of the office of the presidency. Trump showed us holes in the system which Congress will have to try to repair. As a “child of Watergate and Viet Nam” I’m not all that confident in the outcome. I am under no illusion about a Pence presidency however brief. I certainly don’t want another Carter or Reagan. If history is any guide America’s near-term future isn’t looking bright. I just hope all of history doesn’t repeat itself and that we right the ship before it is too late.
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