How will the Democrats and the Main Stream Media Spin the Trump Trifecta?

In 1992, Bill Clinton parlayed a simple mantra, “It’s the economy stupid” into an upset election of President H.W. Bush. In March 1991, President Bush had an approval rating of 89%, the highest approval rating ever recorded in a national poll (Gallop). In August 1992, the same poll showed his rating to be 29%. Relentless negative press and the Clinton mantra tanked his presidency.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks to supporters as he takes the stage for a campaign event in Dallas, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

Democrats hoped to tank the Trump presidency in a similar fashion. President Trump, after a year of relentless negative press and threats of Russian collusion, has a dismal 57-36 disapproval rating (Quinnipiac) even though 61% of the same voters say the economy is excellent or good.

A better question is how will Democrats and the Main Street Media explain what happened when Trump hits a Trifecta? The Trump Trifecta includes; The defeat of ISIS, Congressional approval of major tax reform, and a booming economy that give Americans a well-deserved raise.

1. Defeat of ISIS: Last week, more than 1,000 ISIS fighters surrendered, despite their leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi’s orders to fight to the death. Remaining ISIS fighters brokered a deal to leave Raqqa, the capital of the Islamic Caliphate, on October 14th. On October 16th, the last ISIS stronghold in Raqqa was taken and the city declared liberated by Kurdish forces supported by the U.S. Iraq claims to have retaken all territory lost to ISIS in Iraq, and crushed ISIS when they recaptured Mosul. The dwindling ISIS fighters left are fleeing to small towns along the Euphrates river between Raqqa and the Iraqi border, like Deir ez-Zur, where they will be forced to make their final stand or surrender. The defeat of ISIS is imminent.

2. Major Tax Reform: The last great tax reform was passed in 1986 and triggered an economic boom that lasted a decade. Trump’s proposal to lower individual rates, streamline the 70,000 page tax code by limiting deductions, and recapture of trillions of profits held overseas is a sea change that could trigger another decade of economic growth. The Democrats have already predictably claimed these tax cuts are only for the rich. This refrain will not convince voters who will notice they have more money in their paycheck, and their pocket. Odds are high that a significant tax reform package will pass this year. Sustained 3% growth would mean 12 million new jobs and $10 trillion of new economic activity, according to the Trump proposal.

3. You’re hired: Tax Reform is predicted to supercharge an economy already on a tear. Two million new jobs have been created in the last 12 months. The Dow is up more than 5,000 points, increasing wealth by more than $5 trillion. Unemployment is down to its lowest level in 16 years. Consumer confidence is the highest it has been in a decade. In December 2013, Lawrence Summers, Director of the National Economic Council for President Obama, predicted “stagnation” (growth under 2.5%) was the “new normal” (larrysummers.com). Under Trump, 2nd quarter growth was 3% and 3rd quarter growth hit 3.4%. Job growth for black Americans was 50% higher under Trump than Obama according to the Washington Times (9/10/17). The coal industry, proudly killed by Obama regulations and reborn by Trump’s executive Orders, generated 12% more production than a year ago.

As is evidenced by the 21 point disapproval swing in the latest Quinnipiac poll, the meager 5% positive press received by Trump since the election (Pew Research Center 10/2/17) has had the effect of masking the impact of the Trump presidency on the positive economic events of the last year. When the Trump Trifecta does in fact take place, the Democrats, and the Main Stream Media will be at a loss to explain, as Hillary says, what happened.

With the ISIS capital recaptured, ISIS will collapse, and Trump will justifiably claim victory. He will remind voters he was able to defeat ISIS in just a few months. It turns out he did know more about winning than Obama’s Generals. The Democrats and the MSM will certainly ignore Trump’s victory lap, but Americans who were repulsed by rapes and beheadings, horrified by the destruction of antiquities, and traumatized by killers running down innocents on the streets of Paris and Brussels will give Trump his due.

With the tax cuts in place, the economy will roar, as it did in the 1980s. As wages rise, and jobs appear once again, American voters will notice. Our kids may actually be able to move out of our basements. As the economy heats up and grows at 3 or 4 or 5%, the conversation will shift to the economy. It always does. The evening news and morning headlines, that for a year screamed Russian collusion, will find no takers in that old fable. The talking heads who claimed that Trump was incompetent, will find it hard to explain the solid response by FEMA and the government to the multiple hurricanes of 2017. The headlines will be forced to shift from Trump bashing to reports of job creation, new factories opening in America, trillions of profits locked overseas finally coming home, and raises for American workers.

The Trump Trifecta will happen in 2018. When Democrats and the Main Street Media try to explain what happened, the Donald will gladly remind them, “It’s the economy stupid”.

Robert J Cristiano, PhD, is a professor at Georgetown University.