Claremont Institute Senior Fellow John Marini is one of the few experts on American Government who understood the rise of Trump from the beginning of the 2016 election cycle. Now he looks to the fundamental question that Trump's presidency raises: is the legitimacy of our political system based on the authority of the American people and the American nation-state, or the authority of experts and their technical knowledge in the service of "progress"?
The Midterms Steepen the Learning Curve
From a region of my mind known as the top of my head:
If Trumpistas think they can govern without RINOs or suburban women, they are mistaken.
The president will learn more about the complexities of governing in the next two years than he has in the his preceding 70. Whether this will help or hurt his 2016 agenda remains to be seen. Full marks for his Senate campaigning, which really seems to have helped. Inter alia, prospects for more conservative judges looking very good.
The Senate is probably more strongly pro-life than it has ever been.
All House incumbents who lost (20) were Republican. Were they lousy candidates, or in marginal districts to begin with? Dem candidate recruitment generally appears much better, GOP hurt by so many retirements. How does the GOP lose two Hudson River Valley seats and one in Staten Island?
Once solidly conservative Virginia now seems more or less reliably blue; Georgia permanently purple at best; Minnesotans need their heads examined; Wisconsin poised to erase the accomplishments of Scott Walker; very worrisome when a candidate like Sinema can run as well as she did in Arizona. But, ah, reserve a high place in heaven for Mike DeWine and the Ohio GOP; whatever they’re eating, order a truckload.
Kudos to Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis for pulling it out, but you may want to short your Florida futures. Consider continuing post-Maria Puerto Rican influx and beginning in 2020, nearly 800,000 felons will be able to vote.
If the Dems think their future lies with Donna Shalala (FL 27th) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY 14th), they should get in line behind Minnesotans at the mental health clinic. On the other hand, maybe it’s a subtle move to rally the youth vote: Shlalala’s only 71, a mere youngster compared to Nancy Pelosi (78), Steny Hoyer (79), and Jim Clyburn (78). Get ready for a flood of articles and television bits about “the year of the woman.” These commentaries for some strange reason only surface when the women in question happen to be Democrats.
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Today’s miseducated fame-seekers can’t lead us, unless it’s off a cliff.
Great social change takes time, courage, and charm—so get some.