Monday, August 15, 2016

If All Issues Favor Trump,  Why Is He Losing?

In a forthcoming August 22 issue of  The Weekly Standard,  Jeffrey Anderson has an article entitled “All the Issues Favor Trump.”

Anderson lays out these issues.

·         Immigration

“Start with immigration—the defining issue of Trump's unlikely triumph in the GOP race. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the percentage of the U.S. population that is foreign-born has already surpassed the percentage during the great waves of immigration in 1880 or 1920. That percentage, 13.6 percent, has almost tripled since 1970 (from 4.7 percent) and is on course to exceed 15 percent within a decade. A Gallup poll last year found that 60 percent of Americans are dissatisfied with current immigration levels, with more than five times as many wanting to see those levels decreased (39 percent) as increased (7 percent).

·         ObamaCare

“That leads us to Obama's centerpiece legislation, the second big issue favoring Trump. Charles Gaba, an Obamacare supporter, estimates that the average premium increase that insurers are requesting for Obamacare plans in 2017 is a whopping 23 percent. Many insurers are bailing out. The slow-motion death spiral is proceeding. Real Clear Politics lists 206 polls taken on Obamacare so far during Obama's second term—3 found it to be popular, 202 found it to be unpopular, 1 has found a tie.”

Trump says, ‘We will repeal and replace disastrous Obamacare,"’ and he has been briefed on the House GOP alternative and likes it. Clinton says she will’defend and expand the Affordable Care Act.’ In a clear step toward a true government monopoly, she says that she would add a "public option"—a government-run plan—to Obamacare. The Democrats couldn't even pass the "public option" when they had 60 votes in the Senate and a 75-seat margin in the House. That's how politically toxic it was—and likely remains.”

·         The Economy

‘ObamaCare has thrown a wet blanket over the economy, but it is hardly the sole example of a heavy-handed program of regulation and redistribution that has stymied economic growth under Obama. According to the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis, after adjusting for inflation, average yearly GDP growth under Obama has been an anemic 1.5 percent—last among the 12 postwar presidents and less than half of President Jimmy Carter's tally (3.3 percent). Even Obama's best year of growth (2.6 percent, in 2015) was below average across the past 70 years. Median household income, moreover, has fared worse under Obama than the GDP has.

In response, Trump talks of trade deals that put America first, making American businesses more internationally competitive by cutting the corporate tax rate to 15 percent (down from 35 percent today), reducing personal taxes, introducing a temporary moratorium on federal regulations, and lifting restrictions on all sources of American energy—in short, keeping governments, both others' and our own, from undermining the efforts of American workers.”

·         Law and Order  and Terrorism

“Moreover, immigration, Obamacare, and the economy are hardly the only issues favoring Trump. At a time when violent crime has begun to rise again, Trump is focused on restoring law and order, while Clinton is focused on increasing leniency in criminal sentencing. At a time when new terrorist attacks are occurring every few days or weeks, Trump isn't skittish about saying "Islamic terrorism" and can't be held responsible for ISIS's ascendancy, while Clinton is and can. At a time when we are approaching $20 trillion in national debt—nearly double what the tally was when Obama took office—Clinton is calling for "free" college. At a time when the vast majority of Americans oppose providing taxpayer funding for abortion, Clinton is calling for killing off the Hyde Amendment, the longstanding protection against such practices that for decades enjoyed bipartisan support. (What's more, then-senator Clinton repeatedly voted against what is now the federal ban on partial-birth abortions.)”

The Problem

So what is Trump’s problem?   His problem is his pugnacious personality, his lack of likability, his imprecise blunt language, his stabs at sarcasm, his incendiary off-the-cuff remarks.   The presidential campaign is not a food fight.  It is not name-calling.   It is not a neighborhood brawl.  It is not even a business deal.  It is a contest to find a credible national leader with an even temperament  and disposition.

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