The point of view of a Trump supporter: (link back to article)
Well, I know you all are wondering what I might have to say about the 45th President, Donald Trump. I know he did some things I don’t agree with the last month he was in office. I think it was not right for him to deny that he had lost the election and to keep stoking the fires of his supporters until they stormed the capitol. He destroyed what he had worked to build in the last four years. And those things were in general good for the country. What were those good things, you say? I’m glad you asked. Here is my short list:
- Trump is conservative. I am conservative, I stand for maintaining American Freedoms and the American Way of Life. Republicans have always been conservative, and I have been a lifelong Republican.
- Border Security. Trump did a lot to build and maintain fences and defenses on the border. ICE agents are now complaining that there has been a wholesale change in policies, and some are worried that we will have a caravan of migrants coming from Honduras and other countries via Mexico that will deposit a lot of undesirables in our southern states. Talk to the people who live near the US Mexico border and they will tell you there were a lot of problems before Trump came into office. Now I know some families were separated, and that is something I don’t agree with, but everyone must follow the law! Otherwise we will have anarchy. We’ve even had people in the Bay Area who have been killed by undocumented, like Kate Steinle out of San Mateo county. We need to have better coordination between all law enforcement to stop that and Trump did a lot to change the situation.
- The economy has never been better. My 401k has gone up 80% in the last four years. That has real effect on many middle class families. We need to protect our economy like we protect our borders.
- Getting the pandemic under control. Trump was talking about getting the vaccine out right away and seemed to have some ability to get things done quickly and get around the red tape that studies sometimes require – so it was not long at all before we started vaccinating people. I know, I know, you’re going to say Trump disbanded the pandemic task force left by Obama. Well if he hadn’t, we never would have gotten things moving! All politicians come in and change the people in charge. And Trump kept Dr Fauchi, a renowned disease expert, at the helm. He wouldn’t let him talk to the media much, but you know the media are biased against Trump and never would have reported things in a fair way.
- Trump not only engaged in prison reform, he created a situation where there was lower crime and less use of welfare. People just couldn’t get away with their crimes like they had under the democrats. I want to be safe as an elderly person and I think others do too.
- Trump was good for the military. Not only did he often put generals in charge, he made sure that military budgets were maintained. A strong defense is important to maintain our country.
- Criminal justice reform. Trump not only helped some individual offenders, he made sure the system was more fair for everyone. Others talk about that, Trump did it.
- “Promises made, Promises kept”. Trump did exactly what he said he was going to do. Yes, there were times that he was too aggressive, but he had to be aggressive to get things done.
- Best pro-life president ever. I am strongly pro-life and I remember when Roe v Wade was passed. I promised I would never vote for someone who did not defend the pro-life position. Trump did that extremely well, getting three Supreme Court Justices and many lower court justices in place.
- Trump always supported Veterans, and they support him. We need to be with our nations’ Veterans.
Response of Biden supporter (link back to article)
- First, Trump is not a conservative. Trump is an opportunist. A conservative in the US has usually been defined as supporting the constitution in a narrowly defined but specific way. American ideals are based on the Federalist papers and other documents created by the Founders. Trump gives lip service to conservative ideas – but his way of life is not something you can call the American way of life unless that way is one of unrestrained narcissism. When Trump supports pro-life and pro-business positions, it is clear he does so only as long as following those ideas benefits him. His mocking tone and criticism of both live and dead American Heroes such as John McCain or any of the troops previously or currently serving is an example of the extremes to which he will go to protect his interests. Do you really want to define Trumpism as Conservatism or Republicanism? Every experience recently from the election to the Senators from Georgia indicates Trumpism is a losing strategy for Republicans, Democracy and the American way of life.
- Border Security. Trump did more to create problems on the border with the possible exception of his running lacky-dog Jeff Sessions, who would still be there today if he hadn’t defied Trump by recusing himself from the Russia investigation )prior to the first impeachment trial of former President Trump). While it is true that Trump was able to effectively shut down the border with Mexico at times, he never succeeded in building much of a fence, let alone getting Mexico to pay for it. And his single-minded focus on reducing immigration at all costs via Mexico led this country to be vulnerable to attacks from Russia and elsewhere. When Russians hacked our security systems electronically, it was a real border security problem that left our country more vulnerable in real ways. While someone like the person accused of killing Kate Steinle was much less likely to get into the US than before, others who presented a greater threat were still able to infiltrate our borders. And what about the human cost involved. Even from a perspective of America first, does it really benefit us to rip children away from parents at the border? What do you think that does to our reputation? It seems like the opposite of building goodwill. Now when we complain about the poor human rights records of other countries, who will believe us? And if you believe in some kind of karma or post life accounting in the next world, which of us wants to stand in front of our Maker and defend the separation of families. The phrase that comes to mind is, “those who would trade freedom for security deserve neither” (Ben Franklin) https://oll.libertyfund.org/quotes/484 \
- The economy. There is a famous phrase Cui Bono “Who Benefits”. Who benefitted from Trump’s policies? Not the middle class or the poor, their income and purchasing power continued to decline. Tax benefits went primarily to the very large corporations. Our progressive tax system continues to be a cash cow for those who do not need the help. And this started before the pandemic. When help was given to carry people through the pandemic, most of the funds went to wealthy individuals and corporations. And yes, your 401k went up in value, but might it have gone up more under another administration? When President Bill Clinton was in office, we had a budget surplus rather than national deficit! Don’t you think he might have advised his spouse in ways that would have improved the economy more than Trump’s lame attempts to help himself and his friends at the expense of everyone else? After all, he has never had a business other than reality tv star that saw any profit whatsoever.
- The pandemic. First of all, the pandemic task force assembled by Obama had people on it that had a combination of expertise and ability that was exceptionally good. Certainly, Trump had the option to appoint other people, but to disband a useful government entity and then replace it with nothing until the current pandemic had already started seems to me to be neglectful in the extreme. Then to deny the basic facts on a regular basis further compounded his errors and made it impossible for the people in and collaborating with that administration to effectively address the issues. On top of that, denying even basic information meant that it could be truly said of more than one Trumper who passed away from COVID that ‘their only pre-existing condition was believing the President’.
- Trump did make efforts at helping some individuals, but the biggest prison reform he achieved was getting those he supported off the legal ‘hook’ for their misdeeds (which he, in fact, directed). It kind of begs the question as to whether something is ‘reform’ if it only helps your friends )and those in some cases already convicted of crimes, as in the case with Michael Flynn).
- Trump was good for the military only in the sense that he did not support massive budget cuts. Some of his efforts, like reversing the rights of transgender military personnel, inflicted damage. And Trump’s ongoing efforts to establish “alternative facts” ( ie, lies) created skepticism among friends and foes alike. All branches of the US government, including the Department of Defense, were viewed with distrust. Who will trust us after we abandoned the Kurds and other allies around the world? Precipitously withdrawing troops from Afghanistan without a plan for helping the country move forward disgraced both the military and the country as a whole – service members shed blood so Afghanistan might be freed. Trump’s denigration of military Veterans, such as John McCain and others, also left a bad taste in most people’s mouths and made it harder for people to trust the military – this impacted force readiness and national readiness to address any situations in the world going forward.
- Criminal Justice Reform: See Point 5 above. Reform would actually mean positive changes along with transparency, accountability, and better outcomes for all involved. Trump had no intention of ‘reforming’ anything, only in continuing to look out for himself in whatever way possible, regardless of the cost to himself or others.
- Promises kept? Yes, in the sense that he promised to make life difficult for immigrants, the poor who are persons of color, and those of his rich friends who wanted to become richer at the expense of everyone else. No, in the sense that a better border would be built, Mexico would pay for it, and farmers and Veterans would be looked after regardless of income or social status.
- Best Pro-life President? Yes, as long as you are not a Kurd, Iraqi, Afghanistan, from the continent of Africa, poor person of color, or someone over the age of 1 year old. While he did manage to get three supreme court justices that are anti-abortion on the Supreme Court, there will undoubtedly be a backlash to that from Planned Parenthood. Even the most Catholic President since Kennedy won’t support what the former President tried to do. And Evangelicals are continuing to distance themselves from the former President as it becomes more and more clear that there is a moral as well as political price to pay – for getting a President who does whatever it is the Evangelical right thinks it wants. It makes one think of the old bumpersticker, “the Moral Majority is neither”.
- It is true that Trump has not made the same mistakes as Obama with his “Choice Act” efforts at privatizing Veteran care (which is one of the largest single payer health care systems in the world, dwarfing the national health care systems of many other countries). However, Trump made the same mistakes that other politicians have made – he consistently wants to be seen as being supportive of Veterans without actually spending money or political capital to make Veterans health and mental health care better. Nothing shows this attitude better than his statement during the 2016 campaign that he would give $6 million dollars to Veteran organizations. Consistent with his actions throughout his life, he talks loudly and carries no stick. Many Veterans groups also point out that the former President evaded military service himself (some call him “Mr. Bone Spurs” a reference to why he was excused from military service after ROTC training). Trump consistently demeaned military persons, officers and military service in general. He will never be seen as “one of us” by most military Veterans. While he could count on support while he was the official commander in chief, he is unlikely to gain support as a former President who has engaged in seditious and treasonous behavior.