Wednesday, 23 November 2016
The Trump Win and Beyond
The US Elections are over and as I had predicted in September 2016, Trump won with an overwhelming majority based on the prevailing Electoral College system.
Since the 79th Congress in 1945 to the 115th Congress in 2017, a period of 62 years, the President, the House and the Senate have been from the same party only 14 times out of 36 in this period. The Democrats had had this 11 times versus 3 times for the Republicans, who, in 2017, will have the major advantage of a Republican President, a Republican controlled House and a Republican controlled Senate.
This in itself speaks volumes of the man who led the fractured Republican charge against all odds and beat the odds on favourite candidate Hillary Clinton. He won despite all the denouncements from within his own party. While Obama went out to actively campaign for Hillary, George Bush actually stated that he would vote against Trump.
The man who was supposed to have completely destroyed the GOP has led it to a stunning victory and given the party a new lease of life. Grudgingly, the Republicans are accepting this – they have a much larger role to play in unifying their nation. On the other hand, the lady who lost, is now crying foul because of being a woman, unable to break the proverbial glass ceiling has virtually decimated the Democratic party, a party which is now licking its wounds and undertaking a desperate soul searching exercise wondering what made it fall from its supposed highs to these lows.
The supporters of the losing candidate have started signature campaigns and demonstrations, in some cases violent, hoping that somehow their prayers and their signature campaigns will miraculously change the person, a majority of the American people guided by their Constitution have elected as the 45th President of USA.
Some Democratic Party spokespersons on TV channels have blamed this defeat to a white lash against President Obama. How ridiculous this sounds from a party which had positioned itself as the voice of all the people in America. Hillary Clinton and other informed Democrats have blamed the FBI for the last minute letter as the primary reason for the loss. Analysts and motivated party workers have to find reasons for the defeat and this will continue till the next round of elections.
Psephologists are concerned on how all their forecasts could have gone wrong. The vitriolic anchors on TV channels and the all-knowing journalists are scrambling to find explanations on what could possibly have wrong. Based on statistics from political numbers guru Dave Wasserman, Hillary won the popular vote by 2,012,331 votes BUT she won California by 3,741,023 votes. Would this then mean disillusionment of the rest of the country because Californians would have then decided on the winner?
Crying foul is not going to work. President Elect Trump is on his way to the White House and he is, for better or for worse the President for at least the next 4 years. Democrats are up in arms. Hillary Clinton has proudly announced that the fight must continue. What happened to her resolve to gracefully accept the “will of the people”? Californian Democrats are looking for even more radical answers like secession.
Is this not intolerance from a party that exhibited so much annoyance and surprise when the President Elect stated that he would decide whether or not to accept the results after the election? What’s good for one party has to be good for the other as well. Would the press have been equally kind if the result had been reversed and the demonstrations were now by the Republicans?
So what can we expect from President Trump? He is a shrewd businessman and a very unconventional first time politician with a penchant for surprising the political pundits who have assumed that political analysis is their private domain since no one understands it better than them. He has already announced his plan for the first 100 days and yet there is so much uncertainty on “will he, wont he”.
He is a not a politician who has been trained and brought up in the establishment. His moves will be well thought through as he would normally have done while running his business. He will spring many surprises that a “normal” politician, dyed in the ways of the establishment, may not have done. He will include his family in his decision making because he trusts them. Have we not see Hillary Clinton play a major role during her husband’s presidency? If a wife is acceptable, why not a daughter, or even a son-in-law?
On the international front, Trump, the diplomat, will say things that are true and not what the establishment and the press think as politically correct. There will be issues with the Trans Pacific partnership, NATO and the equations could change with China and India but as most leaders think of their own country first, why shouldn’t the leader of the most powerful country in the World?
Spending on infrastructure in America will increase significantly, partly because the infrastructure needs serious investments and partly because this will create jobs which he must do to meet one of his major election promises. On another note, an inward looking America will be good for the nations of the World so that various leaders will be able to work towards resolving the problems of their nations without turning to a super power for guidance at every step.
Every step that Trump takes, every appointment he makes, every decision he takes will be analysed and counter proposals will be presented. Sections of the press will continue to frighten the masses with their alarmist reporting but this has to be expected. Cynics will keep predicting doomsday scenarios while his supporters will back him as long as he keeps delivering on his practical poll promises.
He has the tail wind with him and once he is in the Oval Office, the election rhetoric will be over and the pragmatic businessman will become a responsible politician.
He has not even gotten started - it is too early to write his epitaph.
The author is the founder Chairman of Guardian Pharmacies and the author of 5 best-selling books, Reboot. Reinvent. Rewire: Managing Retirement in the 21st Century; The Corner Office; An Eye for an Eye; The Buck Stops Here - Learnings of a #Startup Entrepreneur and The Buck Stops Here – My Journey from a Manager to an Entrepreneur.
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