DD+DR+M vs R+T

Watching American politics remains as depressing as ever. There are the Democrats who run as Democrats (DD), there are the Democrats who run as Republicans (DR), there are the Republicans (R) and then there’s Donald Trump (T). And running far to the left of all of these is the media (M). The configuration is thus DD+DR+M vs R+T. Maddening. And the DR types may well have preferred Hillary over Trump, and that includes Paul Ryan, the present Speaker of the House, a DR to his very bootstraps. So let us go to the tape. This is Ryan speaking in October, just a month before the election:

“His comments are not anywhere in keeping with our party’s principles and values,” Ryan said. “There are basically two things that I want to make really clear, as for myself as your Speaker. I am not going to defend Donald Trump—not now, not in the future. As you probably heard, I disinvited him from my first congressional district GOP event this weekend—a thing I do every year. And I’m not going to be campaigning with him over the next 30 days.”

“Look, you guys know I have real concerns with our nominee,” Ryan continued. “I hope you appreciate that I’m doing what I think is best for you, the members, not what’s best for me. So, I want to do what’s best for our members, and I think this is the right thing to do. I’m going to focus my time on campaigning for House Republicans. I talked to a bunch of you over the last 72 hours and here is basically my takeaway. To everyone on this call, this is going to be a turbulent month. Many of you on this call are facing tough reelections. Some of you are not. But with respect to Donald Trump, I would encourage you to do what you think is best and do what you feel you need to do. Personally, you need to decide what’s best for you. And you all know what’s best for you where you are.”

What Trump can do on his own, he is making progress but it is a shark pool at every turn. But the one area he cannot control are the issues that can only be decided by legislation, which means by Congress, which means they must pass through the hands of Paul Ryan. And this is the core issue of Obamacare, which either can be repealed or it cannot. And if it cannot be repealed, because it requires 60 votes and there are only 52 Republicans, then there may or may not be other ways to do it, which requires some kind of finessing in the way the legislation is crafted. And that is how it is being done, or so Ryan says. But among those who in my view are in the R column is Tom Cotton, Senator from Arkansas, a potential presidential nominee and very astute. Here he is talking to Hugh Hewitt.

HH: So what can be done? I’ve talked to the Speaker, I’ve got to the Leader. I’ve talked to Cathy McMorris Rodgers is on today, Mick Mulvaney, Tom Price. They all say it’s a three-step dance because of the Senate reconciliation rule. So you know those rules. Working within the rules, how can the Senate improve its bill, or how can the House send to the Senate a bill that fits within the guardrails of reconciliation and allows for 51 votes that improves the individual market?

TC: Hugh, there is no three-phase process. There is no three-step plan. That is just political talk. It’s just politicians engaging in spin. This is why. Step one is a bill that can pass with 51 votes in the Senate. That’s what we’re working on right now. Step two, as yet unwritten regulations by Tom Price, which is going to be subject to court challenge, and therefore, perhaps the whims of the most liberal judge in America. But step three, some mythical legislation in the future that is going to garner Democratic support and help us get over 60 votes in the Senate. If we had those Democratic votes, we wouldn’t need three steps. We would just be doing that right now on this legislation altogether. That’s why it’s so important that we get this legislation right, because there is no step three. And step two is not completely under our control.

Meanwhile the drumbeat of left opposition continues with anything and everything that can be thrown into the vat included, however preposterous it may be. To which is added the often sensible but still negative criticisms from those who support Trump in general but disagree on various particulars. Three years and nine months till the next election, but those years do go by quickly.

UPDATE: What continues to amaze me is how little assistance the right side of the political divide offer to Trump. I don’t say that there should be blind allegiance, but I do say there should be at least some awareness of how hard it is to push a conservative agenda in this day and age. There is endless opposition from almost 50% of the population who are socialists of one kind or another, either through personal conviction or because it raises their personal incomes to much higher levels than they would otherwise reach. And in that latter group, there are the oceans of welfare recipients on one side and the crony capitalists on the other. They present a formidable phalanx and are almost immovably difficult to deal with. Trump has both the mentality and the will to overcome much of this but he cannot do it by himself alone. The #NeverTrump is now more than supplemented by the @WishyWashyTrump, who are ready to criticise from the very moment an issue comes up. The benefit of the doubt is never towards seeing what Trump is trying to do with the limited resources available in the midst of a public service that is largely and implacably opposed to his agenda. I need hardly add that not everything can be done at once and many things that Trump may wish to do might in the fullness of time turn out to be impossible to carry out. But that he is trying to achieve my agenda is never in doubt, and that he miraculously prevented a Hillary administration will always mean we were given at least this one last chance before the deluge.

Michael Savage, along with Rush Limbaugh, are two who do get it. Savage has just published a book – Trump’s War: His Battle for America – that spells out the dangers of a fairmindedness that borders on the inane.

This is a battle that is for keeps. If we lose it, we don’t get to come back next season and have another go.


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11 Responses to DD+DR+M vs R+T

  1. stackja

    USA President has great powers. DT can do a lot. Congress and the Courts have some input. MSM is a total loss now.

  2. Bruce of Newcastle

    And if it cannot be repealed, because it requires 60 votes and there are only 52 Republicans, then there may or may not be other ways to do it

    The way the Republicans should be doing it is the nuclear option.
    The Democrats and the media are playing especially dirty right now, so the GOP should change the rules in the Senate as Reid did then ramrod Obamacare repeal through it.
    It’s entirely justifiable since it was one of the highest profile Trump promises.
    Let the Democrats read out the phone book on the Senate floor one after another whilst wearing adult diapers. The population will be on the Republicans’ side.

    This is what Turnbull hasn’t worked out. The population will respect you if you stand for something (like 18C repeal) and then act like you mean it.

  3. The next election, an important one is in November 2018, less than 2 years away and the campaigning begins in less than one year.
    With US politics, always check where the funding is coming from.

  4. Paul Ryan, he of the patronising grimace, would make a great Turnbull apologist or Coopers Beer PR man.

    The Posh Left/Faux Right still haven’t worked out that it’s never been about affection for the likes of Trump or, god help us, Abbott.

    The problem is the Posh Left/Faux Right. They have media, academia, the corporate upper crust and just about every branch of the commentariat to sprinkle perfume over them…and still they stink like last week’s prawn heads.

  5. Malcolm

    This blog is becoming a madhouse led by chief nutter Steve Kates. Trump is no fucking conservative. He is a socialist for God’s sake. Paul Ryan is a genuine conservative. The socialists had two horses running in the last election: Clinton and Trump and thus won while people like Kates were caught hook, line and sinker into supporting the socialist Trump. He isn’t shaking up Washington – he is part of the establishment. You losers have ensured a socialist victory in the US. How Kates can support a big government – look how much extra he wants to spend on the military – closed economy is beyond me. Kates claims to be a classical liberal (Say) but he is anything but. He is a small-l liberal big government high tax guy (and don’t say that Trump will lower taxes. That’s rubbish. He is going to blow out the deficit and taxes will have to rise).

  6. Defender of the faith

    Kates: can you please let us know when Trump actually engaged with a conservative agenda? His current priorities appear to be in expanding the deficit and wrecking free trade. Not to mention trashing every conservative model of governance.

  7. If Trump rumbles into Iran and taxes stay high then we are indeed looking at yet another globocrat in Trump. (Flipping Russia to invade Iran is probably not as crazy as flipping Iran to fight Russia but it’s more of the same: debt, petrodollar wars and money printing.)

    But Trump needs to be given more than a couple of months, simple as that. Some won’t give him a day. He is certainly no conservative, but I’m yet to encounter a neo-liberal who believes in free trade or a neocon who believes in winning a war. We all have our little foibles like that.

  8. Indolent

    How about halving the UN contribution, as a start? And removing “climate change” from consideration in decisions made in the various agencies? And this week’s executive order on reorganising the bureaucracy to cut waste and duplication and even, perhaps, whole departments? While the big arguments on Obamacare and taxes rage, Trump is making a pretty good start on shaking up the status quo. And if his cabinet picks are as good as some people think, then they can each do their bit in this regard.

    And how many presidents have had to deal with barefaced and organised obstruction from the previous incumbent? Not to mention the Deep State fighting to maintain its power at every turn.

    American finally has a president who is trying to actually represent the people who put him there which, in this day and age, seems almost revolutionary.

  9. iampeter

    What continues to amaze me is how little assistance the right side of the political divide offer to Trump.

    Trump is a big government leftist, that’s why no one on the “right-side” of the political divide wants to offer him any help.

    Also don’t make the mistake of confusing the Conservative movement for “right-wing”. They are the pre-commie left – just religion/tradition/family/nationalist collectivists.

    The right-wing are the classic liberals – the advocates of individual rights, limited government and capitalism.

    Trump, Bannon et al, are all just a bunch of good ol’ fascists. Oops sorry, I meant “economic nationalists”.

  10. BorisG

    The problem is that Trump has no clothes. For while pundits have denied this but now only the fanatics
    Brigade still worships him.

  11. BorisG

    And Kates should be prevented form any new posts until trump releases his tax returns and produces evidence of Obama surveillance.

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