Good News From The Ballot Box
No, it wasn’t the historic triumph that would have consigned Triumph to the legend of the United States. But it wasn’t bad at all. Actually, for a Catholic, it was great news.
I thought Trump could keep the House even after being elected with a majority in both of them. But this is because I have great confidence in the exceptional capacity of this man, not because it would have been a defeat if it had gone otherwise. Miracles don’t happen every two years, apparently.
In recent times the feat has proved very difficult. Clinton got elected in 1992 with both branches of the Congress and lost both in 1994, leaving more than 50 congressmen on the ground. Obama got elected with both branches in 2008 and was trounced in historic fashion in 2010, losing more than 60 congressmen and several senators. Besides the obvious mistakes they made, it is not easy to persuade the electorate to leave all Washington power in the same hands with a first mandate president. It requires a massive ability to swim against the tide.
Trump almost achieved this, as the differential in house seats is due to a small oscillation of votes the wrong way. It could have been a total triumph. It still was a very satisfactory evening for us, much better than for the Democrats. Astonishingly, even they understand it. We are not euphoric. They are somewhere between disappointed and depressed.
For us Catholics, the most important issue is to do with judicial appointments at the Supreme Court and below. In that regard, we are now in a much stronger position. From what I read around, it would even appear that the dynamics of the 2020 elections make it probable the senate majority will be maintained beyond that date. This means, assuming a victory of Trump in 2020, four more years of sound judicial appointments, including any seat on the Supreme Court that should become free.
Breyer is 80, Bader Ginsburg 85. You do the math.
Yes, losing the House will be a nuisance. If the Dems decide to be stupid, we will have two years of tantrums and committees making a lot of noise and producing nothing of substance, after which it is likely the American people might well put an end to their very thin majority as Trump leads the Country to a landslide in 2020. If they decide to be reasonable, we will have some form of collaboration on taxes, health care and co that will not impact what is most important to us: the religious issues like abortion and the perversion of family and marriage.
The Wall can be dealt with with executive orders if Trump decides to do it. A great tax reform has already been passed, that will be the legacy of the Trump years in economics matters. The individual mandate is a thing of the past. It’s not that you need any great new legislative accomplishment to keep Making America Great Again.
To look at the new freedom Trump has, observe how Sessions was made to resign yesterday already. You may or may not disagree with him on the qualities of the man, but he moved now because he now knows that his replacement will sail through the Senate hearings without too much fuss and with the votes already in the bag. Three months ago, it would have been another Circus Schumer.
This was not the great news we were hoping for. But it is good news nevertheless. Trump can swim against the tide, in the presence of an extremely hostile press environment and ostracised by the Tech Giants, and deliver for us.
What he can still not do is deliver miracles on a consistent basis.
For that, however, you should not blame him, but the American people.