Why Trump still matters.
Let’s stipulate that even if you voted for Donald Trump twice and will do so a third time if given the opportunity, he is a mixed bag.
On policy he is nearly pitch perfect. It’s hard for Democrats, members of the elite media and Republican Never-Trumpers to argue that Trump’s presidency wasn’t a policy success. That doesn’t keep them from trying. But the unassailable facts leave them little with which to work.
During Trump’s presidency the American economy took off. Unemployment dropped to historically low levels – particularly for women and minorities. Black unemployment during Trump’s presidency was the lowest ever recorded.
Inflation when Trump left office stood at 1.5 percent. At no point in his presidency did it exceed 2.4 percent.
During Trump’s administration the United States was a net exporter of energy for the first time in seven decades. That fact provided the leverage necessary for Trump to broker the Abraham Accords, the most meaningful and significant step toward peace in the Middle East since the formation of the State of Israel more than 75 years ago.
With Trump in charge the U.S. border was more secure than at any time in recent memory. Bad guys like North Korea’s Kim Jong-un and China’s Xi Jingping kept their totalitarian and militaristic excesses in check. ISIS – for nearly the entirety of Obama’s administration a terror scourge upon the world – was effectively wiped out.
Trump the president was a success. Trump the politician not nearly as much so.
For all his pitch perfect policy, Donald Trump clangs – loudly and often – in the way he behaves and speaks. The most glaring example lies in his continued re-litigation of the 2020 election. When the Supreme Court refused to hear the post-election suit against Georgia and Wisconsin brought by Texas and joined by 18 other states, the election was over – like it or not. Trump has wasted enormous political capital by continuing to harp on it.
But, for all that, here’s why he remains relevant. Here’s why he is still the frontrunner among potential Republican candidates. It’s an excerpt from his 2017 inaugural address.
For too long, a small group in our nation’s Capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Washington flourished — but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered — but the jobs left, and the factories closed. The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country. Their victories have not been your victories; their triumphs have not been your triumphs; and while they celebrated in our nation’s Capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.”
Every single word of that passage is more true than ever. And establishment Washington – meaning most Democrats and far, far too many Republicans – wishes it to remain true.
And they loathe Trump for calling them out on it.
More than inflation, the border, China or the economy, this excerpt from Trump’s inaugural address goes to the very core of the challenge that this country faces.