I had a conversation yesterday that left me baffled. One of my liberal friends expressed absolute SHOCK that Republicans, and some conservatives, were giving, and expressing, unwavering support for President Trump. As usual, I asked a lot of questions, and I attempted to figure out exactly what was perplexing him. After our discussion, I felt it might be good to lay it all out, and maybe help others to understand. By the way, this IS the EXTREMELY short list. I doubt many will read this entire article, but NO ONE would read the other.
In 1999, Bill Clinton led the charge to repeal large sections of the Glass-Steagall Act through the backing of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. It's a long and complex explanation, and you can do a lot of the research for free online, but suffice it to say that by doing this he allowed investment banks to take higher risks on home loans, with Federal backing, and then was shocked when the foreclosures started rolling in because people were taking out loans for which they were not qualified. Republicans BEGGED him not to do it, but he said it was necessary for low income and minority families to get access to home loans. We all saw what happened when that bubble burst, and the Republicans have never been able to fully restore the provisions of the Glass-Steagall Act, largely because they are called racist when they try.
The response they received, President Clinton said, "Despite this concern, I want to say again, this legislation is truly historic, and it indicates what can happen when Republicans and Democrats work together in a spirit of genuine cooperation; when we understand we may not be able to agree on everything, but we can reconcile our differences once we know what the larger issue is: how to maximize the opportunities of the American people in a global information age and still preserve our sense of community and protection for individual rights."
Oh, it was historic, however, hindsight proved that it was historic for all of the wrong reasons.
In 2009, President Obama pushed through one of the largest Food Stamps expansions in the country's history when he eliminated the limits on adult recipients without children and increased their monetary amount by 13.6% through 2014 (which has yet to be fully repealed). He also pushed hard for states to eliminate barriers to participation. This led many states to eliminate means testing (also called asset assessments) to maintain compliance with the Federal guidelines. This, in effect, repealed the one major Conservative compromise of Bill Clinton's Presidency, the Welfare Law Reform Act. Republicans were aghast, Conservatives were furious. The response that they received? President Barack Obama said, "This is what I was elected to do."
In May of 2009, President Barack Obama nominated then Judge Sonia Sotomayor (now Justice) to replace Justice David Souter. The entire right was up in arms because of the shift in the court. Justice Souter tended to side with the liberal wing of the court, but he was always the most moderate voice on that side, and often would cross lines on issues and was more of a swing vote. This confirmation took the court from having two swing votes on the 9 judge panel to having only one swing vote. Republicans pled with President Obama to pull the nomination back and work with them on finding a more moderate appointment. The response that they received? President Barack Obama said no, and "Elections have consequences."
In March of 2010, the Democrats rammed through the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obama Care, over the ardent objections of both Republicans and Conservatives. Many independents were also upset with large portions of it, including the penalty for non-participation and forced coverage for things that they didn't need (increasing costs). This act also forced religious groups to fund things like abortions and non-barrier birth control methods to which they ardently objected. The Right begged them to reconsider, come back to the table and to create exemptions and rework the bill. The response that they received? Vice President Joe Biden said, "This is what America wants and needs, and this is what we will deliver."
In 2015, after the Supreme Court case of Obergefell v. Hodges, Republicans went to their counterparts and attempted to work with them in order to set up a system that both allowed for the ruling to take effect and to protect the freedoms of expression and religion for millions of Americans. They wanted to remove marriage entirely from the Government's purview, and to create a civil union done through the courts, while reserving the term "Marriage" as a religious ceremony. They wanted to allow for all of the legal protections for homosexual couples without forcing churches, mosques, synagogues, and their believers to violate their beliefs. The response that they received? They were not only rebuffed, but they were then lambasted by the Democrats on television, on the radio, in the news, and everywhere else for even attempting to compromise. Bakers were sued, churches were sued, pastors were sued, town clerks were sued, discrimination lawsuits were a dime a dozen and tons of good people were hurt/violated for their beliefs. Yet, President Obama said, "Today, we can say in no uncertain terms that we made our union a little more perfect."
So, in 2016, then Candidate Donald Trump steps up to the microphone and says what the right has been waiting to hear someone say for decades. He said (paraphrase), "Are you tired of losing? Are you tired of the Democrats winning time and time again? Are you tired of being pushed and forced to violate what you believe in and to pay for those who you have no control over?" The resounding answer was yes, and so the political phenomena that is President Donald Trump came into being, and that is also why his dominating behavior and abhorrent personality were overlooked. Republicans and conservatives were tired of begging for political scraps from the table of the master only to have their pleas fall on deaf ears. They wanted a fight, they wanted a fighter, they wanted to win, and they got all three.
That is why his support is so unwavering. Someone is FINALLY dismantling the liberal agenda. The punishment portion of Obamacare is gone, rendering it virtually toothless and mostly pointless. The Supreme Court has two, soon to be three, new justices who will hopefully hear and rule against the forcing of liberal beliefs and agendas on the populace. He campaigned as a fighter who would beat back socialism and liberal progressiveness, and he's done it, and THAT is why he has support. NOT because he's a moral person, he isn't. NOT because he's a polished politician, he isn't. NOT because he claims to be a Christian, because he doesn't back that up. NOT because he can compromise and reach across the aisle, but BECAUSE he will fight and do whatever it takes to defeat the policies of the left, and will take all of the abuse, slander, and hatred for it.
Because he wins, he will see a new term. Because he wins, he will have more support this election than last election. Because he wins, people will hold their noses and vote for him.
Because when you've tried to be nice and have been walked on, you reach a point where you are just done being nice, and that's where the right was in 2016, and they're not done with the deconstruction project yet. That's why I believe he'll win again in 2020.