Saturday, August 24, 2019

Would I Help Donald Trump?

8/24/2019—Anniversary Day—16 years.

Partisanship is an ugly thing. This came up this week with the question, would I help Donald Trump if it would help America?

During one of the more erratic week in his erratic Presidency, someone floated the idea of reducing payroll taxes to forestall the possibility of a recession. Now, there are many reasons to oppose doing this, including the fact that this recession threat is sort of self-induced by Trump’s ineffectual China tariffs. (Ineffectual in bring a deal).

But one normal reason for opposing the idea, that we can’t afford it, really doesn’t make sense. A recession would increase the deficit far more than a payroll cut would. And the cut would be temporary.

Trump quickly withdrew the idea for reasons known only to him. But, I asked myself, would I vote for this if I were in the House? The answer was, maybe not—not just because it would not work but because it might work. If it did, it would enhance Trump’s chance of reelection, which a recession would completely kill.

Trump is so horrible, that I found myself thinking, maybe the single most important thing is that Trump be a one-term President. So, even at the cost of Americans hurt by a recession, you don’t pass a bill to try to prevent it.

This is why I say that partisanship is an ugly thing. I used to think the worst thing about Mitch McConnell was his statement in 2010 that “[t]he single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.” But, here I am saying the very same thing.

At the very least, it made me understand McConnell better.

Even so, it is still hard for me to change my mind, considering all the harm that Trump is doing. Yet, if McConnell was wrong, which he was, I must be too. Defeating Trump cannot be the most important thing.

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