It’s starting to dawn on Democrats that Donald J. Trump might stand on the steps of the Capitol in January 2021 to swear his oath of office for the second time. A new Gallup poll indicates that he and Barack Obama are tied as the most popular men in America. So what are the four things that might help further smooth Trump’s oath to reelection?
First, despite the preposterous pearl clutching of Freddy Gray on this website, Trump’s hardline against Iran could pay off. He’s steadily raising the military and economic pressure on Tehran. Contrary to all the naysayers, Trump could end up showing that Iran, not America, is the paper tiger. A splendid little war could put the exclamation mark on the Trump first term, allowing him to become the first and only president to lance the Iran boil. Today Trump tweeted, in a variant of liberation theology, that ‘to those many of millions of people in Iraq who want freedom and who don’t want to be dominated and controlled by Iran, this is your time!’ George W. Bush couldn’t have put it better.
Second, I predict that Trump’s election team will be rejuvenated, after a slow start, when Boris Johnson, having successfully engineered Brexit, decides he wants a fresh challenge. He returns to America and replaces Brad Parscale as the head of the campaign, declaring that this is a feat even Winston Churchill, for all his skill at political prestidigitation, never pulled off. Even as Trump muses about making Johnson his new vice president, rumors percolate that Andrew Roberts or Niall Ferguson are preparing a new book to be called The Johnson Factor: How One Man Made History.
Third, the Federal Reserve decides to goose the economy by cutting interest rates even further. Trump announces that nominating Jerome Powell in 2017 was his smartest move ever. Powell basks in the approbation. The stock market soars above 30,000 and Trump, advised by Johnson, declares that now that’s he’s made America great again his campaign slogan will be ‘you’ve never had it so good’.
Finally, Trump himself may benefit from a fratricidal Democratic primary in which Pete Buttigieg is already wheeling out the heavy artillery against Joe Biden by piously shaking his head over Hunter Biden’s Ukraine adventures. The longer the races goes on, the more Trump will benefit. Meanwhile, Tulsi Gabbard could play the role of spoiler. For Trump it could indeed be a very happy new year.