“Time slips away and leaves you with nothing mister but boring stories of… glory days.” – Bruce Springsteen
Politically speaking, the 2020 election is still a long time from now. But, with the Ukrainian revelations and impeachment, if young people and minorities turn out, there’s a good chance that Trump will be the “mister” in the Boss’ song. Only his base, a minority of Americans, supports him. But that base is older, white and votes heavily.
It’s inconceivable that the House could have done anything except impeach him after the Ukraine President call and other testimony. However, from the start the Senate was bound to let him off the hook due solely to politics (though voting against having witnesses could bite GOP Senators in November). This latest Trump fiasco just continues a long trend of Trump blunders when it comes to diplomacy and foreign affairs, including immigration.
Despite what Trump says, his immigration policy is unpopular with the public. Per Pew, the trend for more Americans is to want increased rather than decreased immigration – 38% versus 24%. An astounding 83% want “dreamers” to have a path to citizenship, and 57% oppose building a wall per Gallup. And per a CBS poll, 67% of Americans are very upset about the recent changes in stronger ICE enforcement.
In international affairs Trump is strangely intent on changing our traditional and vital role on the world stage. He is cutting ties with our long-standing allies and figuratively getting in bed with the world’s worst dictators including Kima and even with his North Korea policy in shambles, Duarte, and Putin who will no doubt be assisting him in November.
But only a fourth of our population agrees that we should have only a “minor role” in foreign affairs. Gallup has been asking this question for almost 20 years with little fluctuation in that percentage. Also per Gallup, 80% of Americans support the NATO alliance, 66% want us to ensure the security of our allies and 63% support the UN.
However, Trump does not care what the majority want, only what his loyal, radicalized base wants. On the foreign affairs and immigration fronts, he:
- initially enacted a travel ban on 5 majority Muslim nations (now expanded). Oddly, he did not include Saudi Arabia (home of the 9/11 terrorists); Turkey and Egypt. All three are oppressive dictatorships. However, the Trump organization has had business dealings with them (Bloomberg, 6-26-18) which will come out if we ever see his “permanently audited” tax returns;
- changed immigration policy so that babies and other children of illegals would be separated from their parents at the border. Despite a court order, these families have not yet all been reunited…and some children may never see their parents again;
- stated that the European Union is our “foe”;
- indicated that the USA was at fault for our antagonistic relationship with Russia;
- failed to criticize the Russians for hacking our 2016 election, instead stating that it could be someone else;
- met with Putin with no advisors present, enraging both Democrats and Republicans;
- undercut NATO by remarks about not defending its members if they were under attack;
- publicly asked the Russians to find Hillary’s deleted email messages;
- issued a “deal of the century” for Middle Eastern peace that was totally useless, unrealistic and unacceptable to the Palestinians;
- defended Putin’s policy of killing opponents, saying the USA is not “innocent”.
At the Helsinki Summit, Putin was asked if he had directed Russian officials to help elect Trump in 2016. Remarkably, he said “yes”. That very public statement by one of the USA’s greatest enemies tells us a lot about the truth of the collusion charges in the Mueller report, which strangely was written by Mueller to be confusing, but was still revealing. And, then we have him in a transcript telling the Ukrainian President to investigate Biden if he wants our weapons.
GOP leaders, especially McConnell, care more about party than country. It will be up to voters, especially the young and minorities who often don’t vote, to get out and cast a ballot in November to show them how you feel about their lack of patriotism. Then, Mr. Trump can go back to bankrupting companies rather than destroying our democracy.