I'm sure there are a lot of people on the far right dancing that Trump and the Republicans passed a "tax cut" (sic) bill. What they're missing is the Law of Unintended Consequences. And they should have seen it coming, since from all polls the public hated the bill by almost two-to-one. That's massive. And yet I suspect that that number will grow as the rhetoric passes and the realities of the bill start coming to light and impacting voters.
And that anger at the bill will grow even more when people take a step back and recall how Republicans crammed the tax bill through the Senate without serious committee hearing and debate, not even giving time for senators to read the actual people -- let alone typing it up. (I wouldn't be surprised if we see the images of the handwritten pages of the bill, with sentences cut off from poor photocopying, show up in campaign ads against GOP candidates in 2018.)
Running as a Republican in 2018 already had its hurdles, but the head of the party only has an approval rating of around 37%. But it keeps getting worse for them and more difficult.
At the moment, GOP candidates have three albatrosses around their necks they'll have to run on in 2018 -- Trump Russia (with already two guilty pleas and two other indictments), supporting a pedophile for the U.S. Senate, and now this tax bill that cut taxes for the wealthy while raising taxes on the middle class and taking away healthcare from up to 13 million Americans, all the while adding up to $1.5 trillion to the debt.
And this is merely "At the moment." There is a near-certainty that more Russia-related indictments are coming, with the likelihood of additional guilty pleas, including from those high up in the administration. Child molester Roy Moore may even win his election in Alabama and then sit in the Senate among his fellow Republicans. And the debt will massively grow, while other previously-hidden travesties from the tax bill come to light and begin directly affecting people, like cuts to Medicare and how drastically-gutting mortgage deductions risks the bottom falling out of the housing market (first in New York and California, then big cities and finally spreading across the country).
I have no doubt that those dancing on the far right believe that this tax bill be invigorate the economy. The problem is that there is no evidence that Trickle-Down Economics has ever worked. And there is evidence that it exacerbates existing problems, as the debt grows.
I have an equal lack of doubt that it's the most devout Trump supporters who are happiest their their guru has finally passed a major bill -- not recognizing that they are among those most negatively-impacted by its results.
Every Democrat in the Senate voted against the tax bill. Every Republican voted for it -- except the retiring Bob Corker, who is on record as saying that Trump is a danger to the country.
This is one more anchor that Republicans will have to run on. And it will all get worse for them. It pretty much has to. After well, Trump has zero experience in government -- not to mention regularly acts with numbing irresponsibility, racism and misogyny, and now getting into snit fits with our international allies -- and he has surrounded himself with a cabinet and advisers of limited experience and skills in their fields, since most-anyone seriously expert wants nothing to do with this administration. So, as problems occur, there is no one either in the Oval Office or supporting the president who has the skill to help resolve things.
For goodness sake, at the moment Jared Kushner is still the president's top adviser! (Even though he has been identified as the very source whose actions prompted Mike Flynn to plead guilty to a felony.) This is not the recipe for having The Best Minds around you to fix problems. The State Department is being gutted, so they won't be around to help. Rex Tillerson -- even if he sticks around -- is clearly without much support after having called Trump a "f*ing moron, and he's wildly inexperienced in international diplomacy to begin with. Chief of Staff John Kelly has shown himself to be far-less effectual than many hope, while at the same time for "racially insensitive" (the polite term) and in sync with Trump than is ideal for being "the adult in the room" to help address, let alone recognize problems. Attorney Jeff Sessions appears to be floundering on the edge of his own indictment, so it's hard to see much assistance there. And even Vice President Mike Pence is in trouble with the guilty plea of Flynn who Pence supposedly vetted.
And Republicans are doing a jig for passing the Tax Scam Bill. It appears to be a Danse Macabre. On their own grave.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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