Saturday, 21 January 2017

The Washington Post: Trump has the power now, but his opponents have the passion

The Washington Post: Trump has the power now, but his opponents have the passion

by E.J. Dionne, Jr.

"And if power shifted decisively on Friday to Donald Trump and a Republican-controlled Congress, something else switched sides as well: passion. The political energy in the country is now on the side arrayed against Trump and his agenda. Republicans no longer have Obama as an object toward whom they can direct the country’s ire. With control of both elected branches, the GOP, including Trump, is the establishment.

The relatively small gathering at Trump’s inauguration was a hint of how shallow his movement’s roots might be. It’s true that Washington and its surrounding area stood solidly for Hillary Clinton in November, so there was no nearby crowd for Trump to mobilize. Still, a man who said his inauguration would break all records once again found his boasting refuted by reality.

In the meantime, Democrats and progressives are on the offensive in trying to save the Affordable Care Act and in opposing most of Trump’s Cabinet nominees — on policy grounds in some cases, on ethical grounds in others, and sometimes on both.

Since Election Day, Trump has done nothing to draw his former opponents toward him and much to insult them, deride them and push them away. His inaugural address will only stiffen their determination to contain the damage Trump could do and to restrain him in his use of power. Trump offered a take-no-prisoners message. His adversaries will respond in the same spirit."

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