When Bill Clinton won the presidency in 1992 the Democratic Party controlled the House of Representatives.
Three years prior the Soviet Union collapsed.
That liberated Clinton from maintaining the Cold War defense budget of previous administrations. So, Clinton embarked to reform health care in the United States, but his momentum came to a full stop after the 1994 midterm elections. The Republican Party took control of the House of Representatives for the first time in 50 years.
Instead of reforms, President Clinton ended up compromising with the Republicans. Clinton’s greatest compromise was declared in his second inaugural address when he announced to the American people that, “The era of big government is over.”
Then Clinton’s second term was plagued by partisan disputes, criminal investigations, personal witch-hunts, and articles of impeachment. Historians claimed during this time period the White House staff was defending the president 24 hours a day and the office of the presidency was paralyzed.
Now, when President Trump fired chief strategist Steve Bannon (critics claimed Bannon represented White nationalist ideologies that created the climate that erupted at Charlottesville), Bannon declared, “The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over.” That wasn’t a Clinton compromise; that was a prediction that the Republicans will lose the midterms.
Next November a gain of 30 seats would give the Democrats control of the House of Representatives and a gain of three seats would give them control of the Senate. Historically, in the 18 midterm elections since World War II the president’s party has lost 25 House seats and 4 Senate seats. But in the 9 midterm elections when the president’s party controlled both houses of congress, and couldn’t blame the rival party for their failures, the president’s party lost an average of 33 house seats, and if the president’s approval rating was below 50 percent before election day the president’s party lost 36 house seats and five in the senate.
But Bannon’s prediction wasn’t based on statistical probabilities, it was based on President Trump’s failure to demonstrate leadership after the violence in Charlottesville and condemn all factions that endorse White supremacist ideologies. Every Republican candidate up for reelection during the midterms will pay the price at the polls because their Democratic opponents will make them guilty, by party affiliation, of being racist, because their party’s leader sympathized with Nazi and Klan types.
Now, add President Trump’s reassessment of Afghanistan, a theater of war he stated during his presidential campaign was a waste of manpower and resources; he decided to send more troops and continue what was already the longest conflict in American history. This disappointed conservative voters that thought President Trump would try to get America out of Afghanistan.
Then he pardoned Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was convicted for violating a federal court order prohibiting racial profiling of Latinos. This caused the mayor of Phoenix to state, “He (Arpaio) was ordered by a federal judge to stop and he refused. He received a fair trial and a justifiable conviction, and there is nothing the president can do to change the awful legacy and the stains he left on our community. Donald Trump can ignore the rule of law, but it was our voters who removed Joe Arpaio from power.”
Now, President Obama was accused by the Republicans of using his executive pen to rewrite the law, but the mayor of Phoenix pointed out to voters that President Trump used his pen to ignore the law.
All of this increases the probabilities that the Democrats will regain control of Congress after the midterms. If they win, they are going to make an effort to impeach President Trump to paralyze his presidency like Clinton’s second term, which was the time period, historians claim, 9/11 was planned due to presidential paralysis.
(J. Pharoah Doss is a contributor to the New Pittsburgh Courier. He blogs at firstname.lastname@example.org)
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