In this installment of our weekly Sunday Six conversation, PF Whalen and Parker Beauregard of The Blue State Conservative examine six pressing issues facing America with which we would be much better off if President Trump were still in office.
PF: Of all the potential pitfalls for President Joe Biden, the one which most concerned me from the beginning was how he would handle foreign policy. Missteps with most domestic issues can be highly damaging, both long and short-term. But screw-ups on the international stage can be catastrophic. I fear we’re seeing this scenario play out currently with Biden’s handling of China.
Trump was a pitbull with China even before his election. His 2016 campaign rhetoric regarding foreign actors was most pointed when Trump discussed China. While his deranged opponents were obsessed with everything Russia-related, Trump correctly identified China as the more serious threat, and he followed through with that mindset once he was in office. Even before his inauguration, Trump sent a strong message when he called Taiwan’s president in early-December 2016, a clear poke in the eye to China and their ‘One China’ policy. He went around China to deal directly with North Korea. And his so-called ‘trade war’ with the Chinese was no such thing. His tariffs were masterful. Trump was firm, forceful, and unafraid, and he had the Chinese on their heels for four years.
The only thing Biden has done right in his four-plus months in office regarding China is to have kept most of Trump’s tariffs in place. Otherwise, Biden has been the sissy I feared he would be, and China’s President Xi Jinping has been the beneficiary. It appears almost definite now that the COVID pandemic originated at the Wuhan lab of virology, and whether that leak was due to incompetence or something more sinister, China needs to be held responsible. Instead, Biden is tiptoeing around China with his investigation which seeks ‘cooperation’ from the Chinese and the WHO, and his comments about China sound like they’re coming from Switzerland, not the United States.
President Ronald Reagan sought “peace through strength,” and Donald Trump recognized Reagan’s wisdom and used a similar approach. Biden seems to be more like Neville Chamberlain, seeking peace through submission.
#5: Israel and the Middle East
Parker: All things foreign policy clearly fall in the camp of “I wish we had Trump.” As if we needed more proof of media dishonesty, it’s simply amazing to recall that when Trump met with foreign leaders and delegates we were bombarded with threats of world war or collusion. Trump entered office with North Korea as a major threat to regional peace (not to mention ineffable human rights violations), and it didn’t take long to stop hearing about the guy with a bad haircut. The same went for Russia and Putin, or as you pointed out, China and Xi. Joe Biden has been an absolute disaster, and Anthony Blinken is on track to go down as one of the most underwhelming and most ineffectual Secretary of States in American history.
Another arena where tragedy has already struck in the Trump foreign policy lacuna is the Middle East, particularly as it relates to Israel. Despite decades of efforts to reconcile with millenia-long hatred toward Jews, both Israel and the United States were willing to make concessions if it meant Muslim terrorists would cease their annihlative efforts of the tiny Hebrew nation. Decades of modern foreign policy efforts failed, as each olive branch only further inured acceptance of the fact that while Israel was open to a twp-state solution, Palestinian leadership onkly sought a one-state solution – and that state didn’t begin nor end with Israel. As long as Israel exists, Palestinians will seek its extirpation.
Notwithstanding such impossible demands, the Trump administration managed to carve out four written and signed agreements among Israel and Muslim-majority nations. This was in part aided by Trump’s pivot to isolating Iran. Of course, with the Obama-era policies of kowtowing to evil returning to Washington D.C., it was tragic but unsurprising that Palestine suddenly felt a renewed sense of purpose and protection to go after Israel with the Orange Man gone. Would the most recent attacks of some 4,000 rockets into Israeli cities have occurred with a Trump second term? It seems highly unlikely. Instead, it seems likelier that peace would have continued spreading infectious across the region. The void left by Trump not only affects America, but peaceful, freedom-loving countries around the world.
#4: Border Crisis
PF: Biden’s ineptitude at the border has been perhaps his most visible failing, as the crisis has actually received occasionally accurate coverage by the mainstream media. We’re seeing record numbers of illegal border crossings, a DHS Secretary in Alejandra Mayorkas who appears fully willing to simply abandon his responsibilities, and Biden’s bizarre ‘border czar,’ Vice-President Kamala Harris who has done nothing in over two months with that responsibility. Harris hasn’t even visited the border yet, though she plans to visit Mexico and Guatemala this week.
For now, let’s forget about the less-caustic aspects of the crisis such as the strain illegal immigration puts on taxpayers and the pathetic message it sends to the rest of the world. Let’s simply consider the impact this border crisis may be having on our national security. How many spies, or terrorists, or others wishing to cause us harm have slipped through Biden’s porous border? What will be the ultimate damage caused by those individuals?
Nothing enraged the left more about President Trump than his immigration policies. We could visibly observe TDS set-in anytime Trump mentioned his “beautiful wall” or talked about immigration reform. They called him a xenophobe and a Nazi, which was an interesting accusation considering the man is married to an immigrant. But Trump was highly effective with the border and immigration.
Trump did indeed build large swaths of the border wall, which is obviously necessary to anyone looking at the situation objectively. He properly put enormous pressure on the Mexican government to address the situation on their end, which is a no-brainer, and the approach worked. And Trump improved the border situation immensely, despite being accused of putting “kids in cages” with facilities which President Obama used before him, and Biden is using today. Trump made tremendous gains with border security, and there’s no telling how much more improvement we would have seen had Trump had four more years.
#3: Federal and Supreme Court Nominations
Parker: Republican nominations to any judicial bench, especially the Supreme Court, are no guarantor of maintaining fealty to Constitutional principles. Most recently, George W. Bush’s sitting of John Roberts has resulted in absolute uncertainty with every decision. With a solid 6-3 majority of Republican-versus-Democrat selections, on paper this courtroom composition should be preserving every institution in America. Instead, it’s been reduced to whispers of just another swamp-infiltrated lagoon. Even Trump’s appointments have left something to be desired.
All that being said, however, a Republican nominee, let alone a Trump nominee, is far better than any alternative. Barack Obama put a woman on the bench who said she would adjudicate based on her Puerto Rican heritage. Joe Biden will undoubtedly be pressured to put a black female on the highest court. Much like choosing a black and female vice presidential candidate, once merit and worthiness is thrown out in favor of immutable characteristics there is little hope for a strong legal mind.
Despite Trump leaving office and the Biden team wiping out much of his policies, his administration nonetheless lingers in the halls of courtrooms, where hundreds of appointments practice law based on the Constitution and other statutes. Four more years of ensuring countless other judges ascended to prominent positions, including that of Stephen Breyer, would have been a nice touch.
#2: Government Spending
PF: By no means was President Trump thrifty, and his willingness to spend our tax dollars was my biggest issue with his presidency. Conservatism demands small government with reduced spending and taxes. But while Trump spent entirely too much, he seems like a cheapskate compared to Biden, and at least Trump was somewhat practical with his spending. Biden is all over the place.
Biden is currently on pace to propose $134 trillion over his four-year term. That amount is so enormous, it’s difficult to comprehend, so let’s spell it out numerically. Biden is on track to propose $134,000,000,000,000 in spending. That’s a lot of zeroes. And to put that amount into perspective, consider that President Obama – who wasn’t exactly a penny-pincher himself – jacked up our federal budget from slightly over $3 trillion per fiscal year all the way to $4 trillion. Those figures are peanuts compared to Biden. Such spending will destroy the country, with hyper-inflation and runaway debt. Our kids and grandkids will be the ones paying the price.
Would Trump have reigned in his spending if he had remained in office? Probably not, unless he had a Republican Congress holding his feet to the fire. But in comparison to Biden, Trump was frugal and at least spending would have remained somewhat manageable. Our only hope of salvation now rests with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) serving as a bulwark against the abolishment of the filibuster and the ramming through of insane levels of spending via budget reconciliation.
Trump had talked about his own ‘Infrastructure Bill,’ but it never came to fruition. That bill would have certainly been much more reasonable than Biden’s version, and it would have undoubtedly been focused on actual infrastructure and not pork, like Biden’s is. Prior to COVID, Trump had one of the greatest economies any American president has ever had, with record-low unemployment for minorities, a surging GDP, and a red hot stock market. The V-shaped recovery Trump promised was inevitable, with the only impediment to its reality being leftist intervention. And that’s exactly what Biden is doing.
#1: Critical Race Theory and Black Lives Matter
Parker: In the waning months of his presidency, Donald Trump finally began addressing Critical Race Theory head on. To combat the ahistorical mess of the 1619 Project, he commissioned the 1776 Project. Amazingly, a sitting president had to remind the nation not only of the immaculate ideals of America’s founding documents, but in so doing caused half of the same nation to label him a racist. None of this bodes well for the current and future culture wars.
DJT also prohibited federal employees from being told that white skin is the same as a Klan hood and that white skin automatically consigns one to being a supremacist. An executive order in the closing months attempted to address mandatory struggle sessions. Though well intentioned and imperative to saving the country, it was far too late to make a meaningful difference given his looming departure. What Trump needed was four more years to make domestic cultural issues the absolute forefront of his policies.
In all likelihood, any maneuvers by Trump to rid the nation of the divisive, hateful rhetoric coming from Critical Race Theory would have been met with an insane backlash by the media and cultural elites. For daring to suggest that most whites are not racist, nor responsible for the horrors of slavery nearly two centuries ago, nor Jim Crow laws that ended in the 1960s, nor black fathers’ abandoment of their obligation to raise a child and be a positive role model, they would have doubled down on their already-stratospheric attacks on his supposed racist motivations. This all would have been a net positive. Not only would Marxist indoctrination camps be shut down, but the more folks were deranged and unhinged by Trump’s constant winning, they would be exposed for the cruel, racist, frauds they are.