I made a wise decision earlier this week when I decided not to “allocate” Wednesday’s article to the election results. My articles are normally published at 1am EST for the benefit of my European readers and American early birds. The results were still up in the air at 1am yesterday morning. Some dust has settled and I’d like to explore my initial impressions and reactions with you. Come along.
With the election of Donald Trump as President America may soon face the second greatest challenge of my lifetime; the greatest being the Cuban Missile Crisis of October 1962 which put us on the brink of nuclear war with the then Soviet Union. I’m not engaging in hyperbole! If I wanted to destroy a great power the best method would be to do it from within. That is the worst cases scenario; let’s look at some other possibilities.
Unless the President totally disregards the rules he is constrained by the Constitution and held in check by the legislative branch and the Supreme Court. The part that causes my apprehension is that Trump has never thought the rules apply to him. What would make me think that at 70 years of age he will suddenly have a change of heart?
I’m a partisan Democrat and if I told you I wasn’t disappointed by Hillary Clinton’s loss and the Republicans retaining control of the Senate I’d be lying. The silver lining in this huge ominous cloud is that the Republicans now control the White House, both chambers of Congress and soon the Supreme Court. They can no longer just be obstructionists and blame it on the other side; they have to get something done. Would it be too much to expect what these days pass for moderate Republicans to join with the Democrats to stop Trump in the legislative branch? Due to Republican obstruction Congress has been basically AWOL since 2011. Hopefully that will change and the government will function the way it was designed to.
As to Tuesday night going into the wee hours of Wednesday morning, the bizarre ending was appropriate for a bizarre race. It became apparent that Hillary Clinton was going to lose but too many races were still too close to call. At 2:02 am Clinton campaign chief John Podesta took to the microphone at the Jacobs Javits Convention Center and told the assembled faithful to go home, that votes still needed to be counted and that nothing more would be forthcoming from the campaign until at least later in the morning. It appears that subsequent to the Podesta speech Clinton called Trump and conceded. At 2:45am Vice President-elect Mike Pence briefly spoke to the GOP faithful and then introduced Trump.
The bulk of Trump’s speech was about as appropriate and presidential as he is capable of delivering. However the closing minutes may have revealed the real Trump. He gave thank you shout outs to a litany of losers that will probably have places in his administration. They included Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, Chris Christie, Jeff Sessions, Reince Priebus and Mike Flynn. He forgot to include his running mate. After what was obviously intended to be the wrap-up line and a whisper in his ear from Pence he hastily mouthed the following words into the microphone as his last: “Thank you Mike Pence. Thank you.” If you were thinking Pence will be a powerful Veep; think again! If, (unlike most Americans), you know much about Mike Pence that is probably a good thing.
I’m not going to get into many specifics today; I’ll save that for future articles. America is a great country. It survived (although it is still scared by) the evil of Ronald Reagan’s administration and George W. Bush’s lack of cerebral power. It is my sincere and selfish hope that it will survive a Trump administration.
In an interesting bit of irony at nearly 3am Wednesday Trump made his acceptance speech in a building that had been secured by encircling it with garbage trucks. Let’s hope we survive until November of 2020 and the American electorate takes out the trash!
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