“Paris will be on the ballot in 2020″, we’re assured by angry Democrats. Let’s hope so.
Enthusiasm for “the environment” as a political issue waxes and wanes with the health of the economy. If it’s not much better than it is today, climate change won’t be any more of an issue in 2020 than it was in 2016. On the other hand, if we have an economic boom underway, the Republican candidate in 2020 will be the heavy favorite, and Paris a dimly remembered afterthought.
This is an important issue to Trump’s blue collar base, and not just the white guys. I invite you to discuss the threat of climate change with an African-American working man, or a Mexican-American. I’ve done it. It’s a good way to get a laugh, and bond with them.
This is an elitist issue if I’ve ever seen one. While I’m glad he listened to Tillerson, Ivanka and Jared Kushner, he had little choice but to withdraw from the Paris accord (it’s not a treaty, in any meaningful sense of the word.) Trump wants to be a macho man, and macho men aren’t intimidated by a bunch of whiny environmentalists.
Most people in this country don’t like Trump, it’s true. Who do they like better? Hillary Clinton, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff —— who? We all can’t stand Congress, or almost anybody in it. Trump benefits from the faults of his critics.
I get the sense that he’s weathering this storm. The overseas trip proved to him that he can be a great foreign policy President. The President, under our constitutional system, controls our foreign policy, and not much else. Try as it might, the deep state can’t prevent a President from acting on his preferred foreign policy.
Part of the deep state, the federal bureaucracy, is supposed to be under a President’s control, but these people hate Trump, and realize he is a threat to them. He needs more political appointees in place to control them. But as a broadly unpopular insurgent President, he’s got a limited talent pool to draw on. This needs to be addressed, and soon. Long term, the answer is to eliminate bureaucrats.
Dwight Eisenhower was a great foreign policy President, as was Richard Nixon. And, of course, the Gipper.
Reagan did two, big, things. He won the Cold War and he ignited the economy. Trump, with all his faults, and with all the obstacles he faces, could match him.