Forecasting Trump’s Presidency: The Republican Party’s Decline, and What Comes Next?

Photo by DonkeyHotey | CC BY 2.0

Photo by DonkeyHotey | CC BY 2.0

Now seems as good a time as any to predict where the Trump presidency is headed. In my last CounterPunch piece, I called for the president’s impeachment for violations of the Constitution, and as related to his fascistic Muslim ban.

But let’s be honest – there’s very little chance the Republican party will remove Trump from office. Despite the lightning rod of controversy that is “The Donald,” Republicans see unified government as too valuable for pushing through reactionary, pro-business reforms, to simply give up on this president. True, Trump’s impeachment would mean Pence’s ascendance, and the emergence of a leader who is much preferred by the Republican establishment. But the embarrassment of having to remove a sitting president for fascistic policies would be a long, drawn out process, and would greatly harm the party and its ability to govern. Since Trump seems to be here to stay, the questions become: how will his term will play out? If we can’t get rid of Trump, how do we at least limit his impact on the country?

Trump has committed himself to a scorched earth approach to “governing” via executive order and assaults on the rule of law. But at their current pace, there is little chance that he and his party are re-elected in 2018 and 2020. I believe this to be the case for several reasons. Presidents naturally see declining support over time, even those not suffering from Trump’s brazen buffoonery….

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