Trump Following In Gov. Christie’s Footsteps
Conventional wisdom (CW) is that Donald Trump just threw Gov. Christie under the bus by demoting Christie from head of his Transition Team in favor of VP Pence.
CW is wrong – again.
Trump has paid Christie the ultimate compliment: emulation. (can you imagine what a Trump Inaugural will look like? – hit link – photos below from Christie’s first Inaugural, Trenton, NJ, Jan. 19, 2010)
Trump is following the same strategy Christie used in NJ. Christie’s fingerprints are all over the Trump strategy.
Now that the press has framed the post election narrative as “Trump won due to support of the working class that was betrayed by Democrats”, the stage is set for Trump to forge the same “bi-partisan” “Christie -Crat” coalition of timid corporate Democrats that Gov. Christie did.
(CAPTION: tens of thousands of protesters came out early against Christie, on May 20, 2010)
This manufactured political dynamic will enable Trump to impose a corporate right wing agenda (tax cuts, privatization, deregulation) under the guise of promoting jobs and working class interests – all with “bi-partisan” support in Congress.
The first issue to cement this coalition and illustrate this strategy is likely to be infrastructure, where timid corporate Democrats will be promised union infrastructure jobs in exchange for huge corporate tax cuts.
Of course, the Trump infrastructure deal will include privatization (“public-private partnerships”) and unrelated items like deregulation, attacks on unions, Wall Street financing giveaways, and environmental rollbacks too. (Obama already set the stage for all that with his Executive Orders to “streamline” NEPA and environmental reviews of infrastructure projects. Congressional Democrats – including corporate Wall Street Dems like Cory Booker – have already introduced “public private partnership” infrastructure bills, just like NJ State Democrats supported Gov. Christie’s privatization of water infrastructure and anti-democratic elimination of prior local voter approval requirements).
Just to show that Trump is not serious and is playing the same divisive political games Christie played, take a look at how Trump’s “100 Day Action Plan” proposed to pay for infrastructure:
- SEVENTH, cancel billions in payments to U.N. climate change programs and use the money to fix America’s water and environmental infrastructure.
Of course there are no UN Black Helicopters, just like there is no “billions in UN climate change payments” honeypot (while Trump doesn’t mention that the cost of infrastructure upgrades is in the trillions).
The same emulation of Gov. Christie’s strategy can be seen in Trump’s pledge to repeal Obama Executive Orders and take bold Executive actions in the first hour of his first day in Office –
That’s exactly what Gov. Christie did by issuing Executive Orders #1 – #4 – declaring a moratorium on regulations and granting “regulatory relief”. At the time, Christie bragged about this to the NY Times.
Just like Christie abandoned the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), Trump will exit the Paris Climate accords.
Just like Christie scrapped the Corzine Energy Master Plan renewable energy goals to promote fossil power plants and pipelines – all with the support of Democrats – Trump is all in for fossil:
★ FIFTH, I will lift the restrictions on the production of $50 trillion dollars’ worth of job-producing American energy reserves, including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal.
- ★ SIXTH, lift the Obama-Clinton roadblocks and allow vital energy infrastructure projects, like the Keystone Pipeline, to move forward.
Just like Christie, shifts in billions of dollars to corporate cronies and deregulation will be real, while the promises to Democrats never materialize.
Trump will play the Democrats, just like Christie did.
Trump will act the authoritarian, “conservative without conscience“, just like Christie.
The strategic, political and policy parallels with Gov. Christie are striking and far too strong to be random.
With the press corps focused on “horse race” vapid coverage – and Democrats immersed in identity politics to battle the Right wing cultural warriors – Christie has done his work quietly behind the scenes and laid the foundation for Trump’s “transition”. He was not thrown under the bus by Trump.
Trump’s reactionary agenda will be imposed very quickly – it is imperative that national Democrats not repeat the NJ Christie-crat experience.
The media, under withering criticism for having missed the rise of Trump and ignored all those working class people that support Trump, will be tripping all over themselves to frame a pro-working class Trump manufactured narrative.
Progressives need to quickly organize and not only protest in the streets, but tell Democrats not to sell out.
[Update – 11/16/16 – We told you exactly this was coming – and it sure didn’t take very long (NY Times story):
WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats, divided and struggling for a path from the electoral wilderness, are constructing an agenda to align with many proposals of President-elect Donald J. Trump that put him at odds with his own party.
On infrastructure spending, child tax credits, paid maternity leave and dismantling trade agreements, Democrats are looking for ways they can work with Mr. Trump and force Republican leaders to choose between their new president and their small-government, free-market principles. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, elected Wednesday as the new Democratic minority leader, has spoken with Mr. Trump several times, and Democrats in coming weeks plan to announce populist economic and ethics initiatives they think Mr. Trump might like. ~~~ end update]