by Mark Angelides
On Wednesday, an agreement was made between President Trump and leading Democrats Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi on a “short-term bump” in raising the debt ceiling. Major Republican players are extremely annoyed that the president seems to have completely cut them out of this and just gone his own way.
And here’s the thing, Trump was most likely right to do this. He has not had much support from Republicans for his policies and he has had zero support from Democrats or the MSM. He may just have found a way to deal with both in one small meeting.
The deal was cut ostensibly to allow funds for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, but there is a much bigger picture behind this.
Firstly, Trump has been lambasted by the press for not getting things done, he just has, and it’s for funding that not even the most anti-Trump anchor can give him criticism for. By being the guy to “take the hit” for getting relief money out there, he has become “bullet proof” from media attacks (at least on this decision). It is the Democrats and the Republicans who now look like obstructionists on necessary relief funds.
Secondly, Trump was elected, in part, because he is seen as a “deal maker.” Well, he’s made a deal alright. He went in with his own agenda and did what he thought was best. Republicans may not like it, but then they don’t like anything that does not give them the overall power, anyway.
Thirdly, this was most likely not about just the relief efforts. Trump wants Tax Reform on the table and with participants in the discussion who “owe him a favour.” Marc Short, the White House legislative director, said that “We believe that it’s something to clear the deck,” and would allow Congress to “focus on tax reform for the American people.”
And finally, President Trump has been painted by the media as someone caught between two parties that hate him. And whilst this is probably true, he has shown the Republican critics (who have refused to support him) that he can get along without them. By not being partisan in this, he has reduced their power over him. The GOP would like to believe that the president can only act with the GOP consent, but they are so mired in the idea of partisan politics, that they forgot that there was another party waiting.
This decision may not be popular with anyone, but at the very least, he is showing that he can break deadlocks and get things moving. I say give him a chance.
by Mark Angelides