Roundup — 12/20/2017

Is Trump a blessing or curse for evangelical conservatives?

David French, Ross Douthat, and John Zmirak discuss that here.

My take: so far, so good. In fact, for a pragmatic Republican, Trump is proving to be more conservative than Reagan, Bush I, Dole, Bush II, McCain, or Romney.

On abortion and guns, Trump has been sterling to date. His court picks have been very solid. On top of that, the DoJ is investigating Planned Parenthood. While prior attempts at a direct repeal of Obamacare have failed, the tax reform package–which just cleared both houses today–ends the “Individual Mandate”. Ergo, Obamacare is all but dead.

And while Trump lost in the Alabama Senate race, that had more to do with Roy Moore’s failures in the last two weeks of his campaign than anything Trump did or didn’t do. This is a small setback to Trump, as judicial confirmations will get dicey.

As for his past conduct, I find it reprehensible. OTOH, the difference is this: for all his faults, Trump is at least open about them, and–as far as we know–has not engaged in such proclivities as President.

As far as we know, he hasn’t deflowered teenage aides (like JFK did a la Mimi Alford), or kill his aide in a drunk driving accident (like Ted Kennedy did a la Mary Jo Kopechne) or ejaculate all over his interns (like Clinton did a la Monica Lewinsky) or enlist his wife to destroy the women who accused him (a la Paula Jones), or have sex with his secretary (which former VP Nelson Rockefeller was doing when he died of a heart attack), or have sex with children (which House Speaker Dennis Hastert did when he was a high school teacher and wrestling coach).

Trump may be a cad, but at least he’s an honest cad, and–to his credit–seems to separate his hedonistic pursuits from his professional work. That doesn’t make him a saint, but at least it shows that he has boundaries that have served him well.

And he is doing a remarkable job going after child traffickers.

As for the Democrats, particularly those in entertainment and media, they can go sit on a hand grenade and pull the pin, and the world would be a better place. ‘

They lectured us about Trump’s “grab [women] by the pü$$y” brags, all while they were busy groping subordinates, having sex with them, and pressuring them to do other demented, perverted things. I hope the women–and even the men–on the receiving end of those actions sue the living hell out of those companies, and the executives get bankrupted.

5 thoughts on “Roundup — 12/20/2017

  1. i don’t think anyone could have conceived that THIS is where we’d be twelve months ago. twelve months ago we were eternally grateful that woman didn’t win … and marginally hopeful this man would give us something better than what we had. but what he’s done is . . . mind-blowing. his willingness and ability to stand up for and against with confidence is remarkable. another three years of this … and then hopefully four more? we can’t even conceive an america like that.

    • So far, he’s doing a fine job. I wish he would do one thing differently, though: he needs to learn from the Gipper. Reagan was a master at using the occasional televised evening address–from the Oval Office–to sell key points of his agenda. Trump has the ability to do exactly that, and yet he has not done this. I think he is punting on a golden opportunity to score big points with the masses.

      That is one of the reasons that the tax plan remains unpopular, even though most Americans will see a tax cut out of this: Trump never took the time to make a reasoned case to the American people, whereas Reagan did. As a result, Reagan was able to get it passed in spite of Democrats controlling the House during his entire 8 years.

  2. I’ll admit that so far President Trump has had a pretty good year despite the do-nothing Republican Congress and a few federal judges who seem to think this country is a judicial dictatorship rather than a constitutional republic. Roy Moore’s loss was on Roy Moore rather than the president. That race would have had a different outcome had Alabama Republicans selected Luther Strange or Mo Brooks as their nominee.

    The cautionary tale may be the election results in Virginia, not so much the statewide races as the surprising outcome in the House of Delegates contests. Democrats clearly outhustled and outworked the GOP and now may be on the verge of gaining a tie in a chamber the GOP controlled by a 66-34 majority going into the election. A recount in one race ended in a tie earlier this week and the winner will be determined by lot. So the home of Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson may be on the verge of flipping from a purple to a blue state depending on the drawing’s outcome.

    As for whether Donald Trump is a blessing or a curse for evangelicals, there are too many pundits who believe evangelicals’ support for him constitutes an endorsement not only of his policies but his past behavior as well. I think the actual reality is that many evangelicals held their noses and voted for him simply because they considered a Hillary Clinton presidency to be an even worse alternative. That won’t convince his detractors in the so-called mainstream media or liberal “evangelicals” like Rachel Held Evans and Jen Hatmaker, who will continue to complain that evangelicals sold their souls for political power. Whether or not their loud rhetoric prevails in the end remains to be seen.

      • I dunno. Even those accusations did not, in and of themselves, cost Moore the election. What killed him was his own self-destruction down the stretch, particularly in the last 2 weeks of his campaign.

        For one, he was absent on the campaign trail. That is the time when he should have been knocking on doors, shaking hands, kissing babies, talking an upbeat, positive game. He should have been on his team to steer clear of controversy, focusing on a positive vision, getting Trump’s judicial picks confirmed, etc.

        His team did exactly the opposite.

        Roy Moore has great judicial intelligence, but is politically stupid.

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