We Have to Give President Trump Some Credit

There is much that is objectionable about President Trump.

In one respect, however, we have to give credit where it is due: he’s sticking to his campaign promises. Now, I don’t say I approve of everything he is doing, but when was the last time another prominent Republican tried so hard to follow through on those?

We’ve gotten used to the notion that campaign pledges are for the campaign season alone, and shouldn’t mean anything. We’ve cynically bought into this folly. Even the otherwise sagacious and insightful Jonah Goldberg is saying that Trump’s campaign promise to build a wall and have Mexico pay for it should have just been empty rhetoric.

…America has every right to secure its borders in any way it sees fit. But asking Mexico to pay for it literally adds injury to insult. In economic terms there’s little difference between asking them to pay for it and forcing them to build it themselves.

None of us should be surprised at what a Trump administration looks like, even a little more than a week into it. Why? Because for better or for worse (quite often an emphasis on the latter), with Trump what you see is what you get. We’re so accustomed to the opposite from everyone, including Republicans, that we may have felt certain that President Trump’s policies would be much different than candidate Trump’s pledges. So far, we’re wrong.

The exact same can be applied to President Trump’s newly-signed executive order which places a temporary ban on those coming from certain countries which have a Muslim majority.

He talked of it somewhat early on the campaign trail in December 2015. It was discussed again only a few months before the general election in July 2016. Now that a ban is in place, there is shock, anger, and complaints of executive overreach. While I believe much of the frustration is warranted, this should have been expected.

Charles Cooke’s piece Trump’s Executive Order Covers Green Cards — That Makes No Sense lays out a great case for why the inclusion of green cards in President Trump’s EO is entirely unacceptable. Cooke ends the piece perfectly:

Had he stuck to his predecessors’ precedents, he would today be on safe ground. Had he submitted his plans to Congress, for debate and dissent and redrafting, the teething pains might have been significantly lessened. Had he involved his departments before the crisis hit, he would have been able to provide answers that sounded credible to the ear. But he didn’t. He went for broke, regardless of the law and the consequences. And now will come the fallout.

Trump’s campaigning included many promises that had an undercurrent of “consequences be damned.” We’re now just beginning to realize he meant what he said. I may not like plenty of it, but he deserves credit.

Like I said, we’re barely a week into this new administration. Many are already losing it over every little statement that comes from the White House. Inauguration crowd size discussion? Let’s move on, please, and focus on things which actually matter. The small and insignificant items are a mere annoyance. The larger items and policy paths are a different matter entirely.

It’s Trump, after all, and I’m sure he’ll continue to keep his promises. It is this very consistency which reaffirms that my decision to vote for someone besides either nominee remains the right choice, even now.

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