In the near future, I will examine the Obama presidency. But one thing is certain: For the past eight years, I have slept well knowing this fine, scandal-free man was in the White House. No Drama Obama. History will be very kind to him. He may well be remembered as the last president of the United States.
Now we're headed into an ominous "experiment."
Donald Trump enters the White House with less legitimacy than any president in history. His opponent, Hillary Clinton, won the popular vote by the largest margin ever (tying Obama in 2012). Trump's approval rating is the lowest for an incoming chief executive in history. His Electoral College victory will forever be tainted by the tilting of the election in his favor by Russian intelligence, FBI Director James Comey, and media malpractice — manically overplaying fake Clinton scandals while downplaying or ignoring Trump's massive real scandals and conflicts of interest. And never forget voter suppression. This was the first presidential election after the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act.
Nevertheless, Trump and the Republicans are claiming a mandate to undertake a massive shift in our nation's life and trajectory. Taking health care away from 30 million Americans — at least half of whom are in the vaunted white working class — is Job No. 1. But the damage won't stop there.
The Republicans are hot to cut taxes on the rich and eviscerate "entitlements" (read the earned benefits of Social Security and Medicare). To roll back regulations protecting the environment and holding back the looting from anti-competitive mergers, too big to fail banks, and the oligarchs. The latter, along with a proto-junta of generals, stuff his cabinet nominees. If we only see America turned into a banana republic kleptocracy, we'll be lucky.