Despite a total lock on all three branches of the United States government, Trump has been curiously unproductive. Some of his major goals, like deconstructing NAFTA, have been successful. Others, like antagonizing all of America’s allies, has been extremely productive. Unilateral foreign policy moves have happened, but whether or not they succeeded depends on whether you like or dislike the United States.
But the Trump administration has been marked by a curious absence of major legislative victories. The fact is, it seems that Republicans can’t get on the same page. Despite having control over the House, the Senate, and the Presidency, Republicans can’t seem to come together to work on legislation the party would support.
Take the Republican Party’s criminal obsession with dismantling the “job-killer” Obamacare, despite its widespread popularity. They’ve been completely unable to make progress on that front, mostly because it turns out their constituents actually like having healthcare. People don’t want to be bankrupted by medical procedures, it turns out. What a job killer!
But if you listen to the Republicans, anything short of Gilded Age laissez-faire capitalism is a job killer. Unions, for example, are job serial killers. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone in the house was calling child labor laws “job killers.” Think of all the jobs children could have without those pesky regulations interfering. Their tiny hands are so useful for sewing on buttons and constructing smartphone components.
Trump has also been busy shooting himself in the foot with pointless temper tantrums and empty gestures. He had an intern bodily remove CNN’s Jim Acosta from a press conference for asking a totally reasonable question, which created a massive media backlash. As the saying goes, never pick an argument with someone who buys ink by the barrel.
He also took this opportunity to force out Jeff Sessions, a completely pointless power move that can be easily countered by the Democratic House of Representatives come January 2019. Removing Jeff Sessions won’t stop the Mueller investigation, and there’s very little that could stop the investigation in a way that wouldn’t blow up in Trump’s face immediately.
Not that such an explosion seems to put Trump off: the Democratic victory seems to have broken his brain a little bit. He’s a self-declared “winner” who just lost, big time, to the people that he regularly insults and inveighs against. The cognitive dissonance must be dramatic, and I can’t imagine that he has the emotional tools to handle such a repudiation of his core beliefs about the world. That takes a mature person, and we’ve seen how mature Trump can be over the last two years.
But now, thanks to the Democratic House victory, Trump will finally have an excuse for the crash-and-burn failure of his inane planes. “Wah,” he will whine, “the obstructionist Democrats won’t let me appoint my cronies to Federal courts! The Democrats won’t let me put a blinking TRUMP sign outside the White House! The Democrats won’t let me tax the poor at 110%! It’s un-American and cowardly!” He will shout this from his pulpit as he moans on Fox News.
The thing is, Trump has been playing foil to a gaggle of children whose only decision is how much to suck on his nuts. With an actual opposition party in power, Trump may quickly discover just how easy he had it before, and just how dramatically terrible he is at even pretending to run a country.
Hey, when it rains, it pours.