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APD Review | Dysfunction is keyword for Washington in next two years

Top News2018-11-08

By APD writer Roy LuIn his first ever White House press conference after the midterm elections and his only third solo formal press conference since taking office, U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday extended an olive branch to his Democrat foes who had just grabbed the control of the House of Representatives.“There are many things we can get along on,” said Trump who had spent months demonizing Democrats as “mobs”. “The election is over, everybody is in love.”However, Trump the bellicose and apoplectic man immediately spelt out clearly that the “love” he just referred to was highly conditional. The conditions were stated as follow: Do not investigate me and my family business and cooperate with me on my legislative agenda.To be more exact, Trump threatened Democrats that he would resort to “warlike posture” in Washington if the other side investigated him.In his chaotic and freewheeling press conference, Trump did not elaborate on details about what “warlike posture” would look like. Unfortunately for American voters, they will most likely to witness the political duel in the next two years. To begin with, investigations by Democrats- controlled House into Trump and his family business are almost inevitable. Since the outset of his presidency, Trump has been dogged by controversies over his rare refusal to release his tax return and the suspicious interaction between Russia and his 2016 presidential campaign team. Democrats had for months vowed to demand the release of Trump tax returns, to look into the Trump family business and to reopen the House probe- prematurely ended by House Republicans- into any ties between the Trump team and Russia during the 2016 election. At least for now, the investigative postures by Democrats had not changed.Speaking on NBC News hours before Trump’s press conference, Eric Swalwell, a Democrat sitting on the House Intelligence Committee said that the Democrats would “fill in the gaps on the Russia investigations” and “look at the cashing in of access to the Oval Office” and the U.S. voters would see Trump’s tax returns.Trump’s reaction to Democrats’ possible probes was starkly aggressive. Speaking to reporters, Trump equated House probes with failure to achieve any bipartisan compromises.“If that happens, then we’re going to do the same thing and government comes to a halt and I’m going to blame them,” he said, which led to the second arena of potential conflict between the two parties, namely the deadlock in passing the legislative agenda.Despite his bragging about his negotiation skills, the past 22 months have witnessed almost no bipartisan deals under Trump’s auspices. The legislative failure happened when Republicans controlled both the White House and the Congress, and now since the House is controlled by Democrats, it seems almost certain that Democrats will block Trump’s crucial initiatives including the establishment of a border wall with Mexico.In a Trumpian style of insincerity, Trump said that he was willing to work with Democrats on key legislative priorities. What mattered most, however, was what came after his insincere outreach.“They (Democrats) can play that game, but we can play it better,” said Trump. “All you’re going to do is end up in back and forth and back and forth, and two years is going to go up and we won’t have done a thing.”Trump is never a wise man. But the prediction he offered this time would most likely fulfill itself with division and partisan fight in Washington only deteriorate.Roy Lu, researcher of APD Institute. Lu covered the 2016 U.S. presidential election till the very end of Donald Trump’s upset victory. He is a political contributor to APD. (ASIA PACIFIC DAILY)

By APD writer Roy Lu

In his first ever White House press conference after the midterm elections and his only third solo formal press conference since taking office, U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday extended an olive branch to his Democrat foes who had just grabbed the control of the House of Representatives.

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“There are many things we can get along on,” said Trump who had spent months demonizing Democrats as “mobs”. “The election is over, everybody is in love.”

However, Trump the bellicose and apoplectic man immediately spelt out clearly that the “love” he just referred to was highly conditional. The conditions were stated as follow: Do not investigate me and my family business and cooperate with me on my legislative agenda.

To be more exact, Trump threatened Democrats that he would resort to “warlike posture” in Washington if the other side investigated him.

In his chaotic and freewheeling press conference, Trump did not elaborate on details about what “warlike posture” would look like. Unfortunately for American voters, they will most likely to witness the political duel in the next two years. 

d9bbc6f2cad6e1d519a65bbc751607e6_w.jpg

To begin with, investigations by Democrats- controlled House into Trump and his family business are almost inevitable. Since the outset of his presidency, Trump has been dogged by controversies over his rare refusal to release his tax return and the suspicious interaction between Russia and his 2016 presidential campaign team. 

Democrats had for months vowed to demand the release of Trump tax returns, to look into the Trump family business and to reopen the House probe- prematurely ended by House Republicans- into any ties between the Trump team and Russia during the 2016 election. At least for now, the investigative postures by Democrats had not changed.

Speaking on NBC News hours before Trump’s press conference, Eric Swalwell, a Democrat sitting on the House Intelligence Committee said that the Democrats would “fill in the gaps on the Russia investigations” and “look at the cashing in of access to the Oval Office” and the U.S. voters would see Trump’s tax returns.

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Trump’s reaction to Democrats’ possible probes was starkly aggressive. Speaking to reporters, Trump equated House probes with failure to achieve any bipartisan compromises.

“If that happens, then we’re going to do the same thing and government comes to a halt and I’m going to blame them,” he said, which led to the second arena of potential conflict between the two parties, namely the deadlock in passing the legislative agenda.

Despite his bragging about his negotiation skills, the past 22 months have witnessed almost no bipartisan deals under Trump’s auspices. The legislative failure happened when Republicans controlled both the White House and the Congress, and now since the House is controlled by Democrats, it seems almost certain that Democrats will block Trump’s crucial initiatives including the establishment of a border wall with Mexico.

In a Trumpian style of insincerity, Trump said that he was willing to work with Democrats on key legislative priorities. What mattered most, however, was what came after his insincere outreach.

d3cc36264987404689f6722d2111ea63.jpg

“They (Democrats) can play that game, but we can play it better,” said Trump. “All you’re going to do is end up in back and forth and back and forth, and two years is going to go up and we won’t have done a thing.”

Trump is never a wise man. But the prediction he offered this time would most likely fulfill itself with division and partisan fight in Washington only deteriorate.


Roy Lu, researcher of APD Institute. Lu covered the 2016 U.S. presidential election till the very end of Donald Trump’s upset victory. He is a political contributor to APD. 

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(ASIA PACIFIC DAILY)

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