Friday, November 11, 2016

President Elect Donald Trump, trumps Pollsters, Pundits & Pontificators by trouncing Hillary Clinton

Trump and Obama in Oval Office 
Picture Courtesy: Reuters

Donald Trump won the Presidential Election hands down by winning 290 Electoral College votes to Hillary Clinton's 228. Contrary to expectations, Republicans kept control of the Senate as Democrats could gain only two additional seats increasing their strength to 48. They needed five to regain a majority. In the House, Democrats could gain only six seats increasing their number to 193, so the Republicans keep control with 238 seats.

This means Donald Trump will have the full support of the Senate and the House and all Committee Chairpersons in both Houses will be Republican. Democrats do have some leverage in the Senate as traditionally 60 votes are required to pass laws, to approve any Cabinet or Judicial appointments. Just as the Republicans have obstructed President Obama's appointees in Supreme Court and elsewhere, Democrats are likely to pay back in the same coin.

The serious challenges that are likely to face the United States and President-Elect over next four years are; resolving Syrian conflict, defeating ISIS and more importantly job creation within the United States, which was Trump's election promise.

A more confrontational situation could arise over Supreme Court appointments. President Obama's current nominee has not been approved and chances are, he will not be. There is a possibility that democrats may block Trump's appointees. This will leave the Supreme court split with four Conservative and four Moderate judges. Any appeals from the lower court that result in a 4:4 split decision make the Supreme Court redundant as in that case the lower court decision is final. More importantly, another two Moderate judges are likely to retire in the next four years. If Republicans try to pack the court with right-wing hard core Conservative judges, women's right to choose and a number of other important judgments involving social decisions may be thrown out of the window. This could cause a revolt in the United States with violent street protests with possibly resulting in an even more divisive America.

One hopes, Donald Trump will make his own decisions and not allow the right wing of Republican Party dictate him. After all, he won this election all on his own and he does not owe anything to anyone. Otherwise, he may end up being a one term President.