Politics, Minneapolis Star Tribune: Politics
Sat, 01/07/2017 - 4:47am
In the closing weeks of his campaign last year, Donald Trump laid out what he called a “100-day contract” with voters — an ambitious flurry of administrative and legislative steps that he vowed would start the process of “draining the swamp” and protecting American workers. With many of those promises
Unless Congress can get past its differences and pass some kind of budget bill by Friday, the government is going to shut down. Fortunately for us, our new president is a master negotiator, the man who literally wrote the book on dealmaking. With his broad experience and unparalleled insight into human nature, it should be no problem for him to get members of Congress in both parties to arrive at a mutually beneficial settlement. I'm kidding, of course.
If you're relishing a moment of political relief at the outcome of Sunday's election in France — delighted that the far-right candidate (Marine Le Pen of the National Front) came in second place behind the handsome 39-year-old centrist neoliberal technocrat Emmanuel Macron, who is overwhelmingly favored to prevail in the second round of voting on May 7 — you should go right ahead and enjoy it. But don't let the celebration last too long. Macron's win suggests that 2017 is unlikely to be the year that the European Union and the liberal international order are toppled by a populist insurgency, opening the way for a decidedly post-liberal age.
Finally the great battle between open society and national solidarity is at hand. France has clarified the political stakes of our time by replacing the traditional left and right with a sharper division between the internationalist establishment and the populist nationalists. You could make out this fissure last year when the U.
This Friday, one of two things will happen: Either the federal government will shut down, or Republicans will bow and make a deal with Democrats to keep things functioning. Either way, it will be a remarkable embarrassment for President Trump and his party, even as they enjoy unified control of both the executive and legislative branch. Indeed, this week Trump and the Republicans are relearning one of the perennially forgotten lessons of American politics: Governing is hard. It's supposed to be a routine duty for Congress and the president to authorize federal government spending.
The social panic and media hysteria over fake news continues unabated. And once again, Facebook's reaction is all wrong. The left's intense focus on false news stories exploded in the wake of what seemed like an inexplicable Republican victory in the 2016 election, with Donald Trump beating Hillary Clinton despite an avalanche of bad press directed at the former, especially in the final weeks of the campaign.