The presidency of Donald Trump has once again proven the business mogul to also be a savvy New York con man. The recent Congressional action to repeal and replace Obamacare was met with cheers by the GOP establishment. Congressmen were actually called to order after the slim margin of victory of 217 – 213 to replace the much-needed healthcare program. Many members of Congress broke out singing, “Na-nana-na, hey, hey, goodbye” as more than 24 million Americans potentially may lose health care.
Although the repeal and replace bill must have centered approval before it becomes law, it is serving as another great distraction engineered by President Trump. So far in his presidency, policies that Trump has tried to implement have failed dramatically. The first was his ban on immigration, which turned out to be a ban on Muslims according to many judges on the federal court. Attempts to rewrite the executive order have resulted in failure as the administration tries to outmaneuver constitutional protection. The country is also facing a very real prospect of armed conflict with the rogue state of North Korea. Pres. Trump has ordered the Carl Vinson carrier strike group to the waters off the coast of Korea as a threat to Kim Jong-Un. Tensions are high in the region as the North Korean government continues to test missile technology and has pledged to also hold a nuclear test — both of which Trump has stated the United States will take action on if it sees it as a threat to itself or to its allies.
However, what’s not going away are questions around the role the Russian government played in hacking US elections as well as senior officials in the Trump administrations activities with foreign governments that include Russia, China, and Turkey. Dramatically, former US Gen. Michael Flynn had to resign from his position as the head of the national security agency because it was discovered he should have registered as a foreign agent of Ukraine. In addition, Pres. Trump may be in violation of the emollients clause of the U.S. Constitution due to his company’s extensive business ties with foreign governments. Earlier this year, the Trump organization was awarded several trademark registrations for various business projects. Although Pres. Trump claims he has stepped away from business dealings with his company and has left his elder children to run the organization, there are still issues regarding financial transparency. So far, Trump has not released his tax forms, so it is unknown the extent of his business dealings with foreign governments and the income he has generated.
The House Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare will undoubtedly be checked further down the line to become an issue in the 2018 midterm elections. Every seat in Congress will be available and voters will have to decide whether to believe the promises of the Republican platform to create a viable alternative to Obamacare and other controversial policies that Trump intends to implement. If the Democratic Party does not capitalize on the Trump scandals and the stripping away of social safety nets it will spur further division amongst progressives in the party.