It’s been just over two months since Trump was inaugurated, and already his approval ratings are at a historic low. He promised the American people “so much winning” and yet all we’ve seen so far is failure after failure. He said he would build a “beautiful” border wall with Mexico, and yet all he’s managed to do is erect a wall of mistrust between his administration and the public. The President arrived in Washington promising to “drain the swamp”; but instead he jumped right in! His outright lies and blistering incompetence have effectively brought his tragedy of a Presidency to an end.
Act I: Trumpcare
On March 23rd, Trump, tired of negotiating the details of a bill he did not fully understand, issued an ultimatum to House Republicans: you can either vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) tomorrow or lose your chance to repeal Obamacare entirely. Moderate Republicans, fearing the AHCA would be disastrous for their constituents, and the Freedom Caucus, cringing at the idea of approving a Republican-led welfare initiative, did not pledge their support and alas the bill was dead before it even got to the House floor.
Trump’s ultimatum and attempt to rush a vote on an issue as complex as healthcare (his own words) demonstrates how little understanding, interest and patience he has for governing. Moreover, Trump is the first President in modern history to lose his first big legislative battle, which is surprising since he ran on the promise of being a deal-maker. His inability to rally support for the AHCA among his own party-members demonstrates how poor his deal-making ability really is.
Tumpcare’s failure paints Trump as a poor negotiator and incompetent leader who commands no respect and loyalty among his fellow party members in Congress. Unless his agenda coincides with the GOP’s agenda, the President won’t be able to make good on any of his campaign promises in the future. In just 60-something days President Trump has managed to make himself effectively irrelevant for the rest of his term in office (however long that will be).
Act II: The United States of Russia
Trump has long praised Putin, and revelations that Trump’s victory was the calculated product of Russian government intervention in the 2016 presidential election may just explain why that is. In fact, recent evidence suggests that there is a “well-developed conspiracy of cooperation between Trump and the Russian leadership” managed by former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who, in turn, was working for a Russian billionaire to advance the interests of President Putin in the US.
However, uncorroborated reports that the Russian government has damaging information, of a sexual nature about the President, suggests that the dynamic of the Trump-Russia relationship is in fact different from what it was previously thought to be. If true, these reports would be suggesting that the Russian government has ownership of the President of the United States—which is as scary an idea as it is dangerous. This would certainly explain why Russia favored a Trump win and why the President is very willing to get along with his Russian counterpart.
To add to the mystery, at a recent Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on this whole affair, former FBI agent Clint Watts testified that Trump’s wiretapping claims were the product of Russian “active measures”. By that he meant that Russian intelligence services had fabricated stories about Obama wiretapping Trump in the hopes that 45 would pick them up and thereby create confusion and chaos in the investigation into Trump-Russia ties. Watt’s testimony certainly begs the question of whether Trump is knowingly under Russian influence or just too much of a fool to notice.
Adding salt to the wound, former Trump National Security Advisor and retired Army lieutenant general Michael T. Flynn has agreed to testify in front of Congress on Russian meddling in the 2016 Presidential election in return for immunity from prosecution. Flynn’s request for immunity suggest there is a lot at stake and only serves to fuel speculation about the President’s possibly wrongful and impeachable ties to Russia.
President Trump cannot, irrespective of his incompetence, successfully be the leader of the United States without having any of the legitimacy that is required to ascend to the highest office in the country. Although none of the reports cited above have yet been proven to be true, it’s safe to say that they have raised the question of whether Trump should be impeached. While Trump remains in office, his lack of legitimacy and open calls for him to step down have made him largely powerless and led to the beginning of end for his administration. While closure on this matter is necessary, the failure of the House Intelligence Committee to conduct an impartial investigation into the affair indicates that it may be a while before we get it.
Act III: One final failure
The President’s budget proposal for fiscal year 2017 is the one final failure that concludes the Trump presidency. The budget proposes severe cuts to all (vital) departments apart from the military, in favor of maintaining spending on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. These cuts have been met with severe opposition even from Republican governors whose states benefit directly from regional economic development programs supported by the very same departments. Moreover, Trump is set to face another uphill battle in convincing House Speaker Paul Ryan to rally behind the budget, seeing as Ryan has long been advocating for major reform and cuts to social programs like Medicare.
Trump’s completely misguided budget proposal is just another reason why the American people are losing faith in his ability to lead. Even Congressional Republicans wont back this budget, with one of them saying “its dead on arrival”. Trump’s blatant disregard for common-sense is costing him the success he talked so much about, and this budget proposal is nothing but the final straw in a series of fails that will render his Presidency largely irrelevant.
Act IV: The awakening
After two months of having a failed President with an incessant golfing addiction and a child’s temperament at the helm of their country, Americans are waking up to the possibility that Trump only wanted to play President. At the slightest sign of difficulty, he runs like a little child to where he feels safe: Mar-A-Lago. Whenever someone questions his actions he counter-attacks and blames everyone but himself, like a child would. When he doesn’t understand something, he becomes impatient and angry, again, like a child would. Trump is but a child in a man’s body who wanted the attention, fame, glory and power of the US Presidency—but never the responsibility. And although all his failures as President have undone any legacy that he could potentially have had, it’s his desire to play rather than be, which more than anything, prevented him from really becoming President in the first place. It’s now up to the American people to stand up to this fraudster and remove him from the adult job of President and show him to the nearest sandbox.