That note of defensiveness first crept into the American political lexicon with the unlikeliest of politicians: Ronald Reagan, the man who seemed like the least defensive, most genial guy on the planet. On this subject at least, think of him as Trumpian before the advent of The Donald, or at least as the man who (thanks to his ad writers) invented the political use of the word “again.” It was, after all, employed in 1984 in the seminal ad of his political run for a second term in office. While that bucolic-looking TV commercial was entitled “Prouder, Stronger, Better,” its first line ever so memorably went, “It’s morning again in America.” (“Why would we ever want to return to where we were less than four short years ago?”)
Shortly after taking office, Trump put Iran 'on notice' following their ballistic missile tests on January 29, 2017.[640] In February 2018, the Trump administration imposed sanctions on Iran's 25 individuals and entities, which it said were but "initial steps", with Trump's National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn adding that "the days of turning a blind eye to Iran's hostile and belligerent actions toward the United States and the world community are over."[641][642][643]

Donald Trump, in other words, is the first person to run openly and without apology on a platform of American decline. Think about that for a moment. “Make America Great Again!” is indeed an admission in the form of a boast. As he tells his audiences repeatedly, America, the formerly great, is today a punching bag for China, Mexico… well, you know the pitch. You don’t have to agree with him on the specifics. What’s interesting is the overall vision of a country lacking in its former greatness.

Trump attributed his victory to social media when he said "I won the 2016 election with interviews, speeches, and social media."[24] According to RiteTag,[25] the estimated hourly statistics for #maga on Twitter alone include: 1304 unique tweets, 5,820,000 hashtag exposure, and 3424 retweets with 14% of #maga tweets including images, 55% including links, and 51% including mentions.[26]
Two days before the second presidential debate, a 2005 recording surfaced in which Trump was heard bragging about forcibly kissing and groping women.[460][461][462] The hot mic recording was captured on a studio bus in which Trump and Billy Bush were preparing to film an episode of Access Hollywood. In the tape, Trump said: "I just start kissing them ... I don't even wait. And when you're a star, they let you do it, you can do anything ... grab 'em by the pussy."[463] During the recording, Trump also spoke of his efforts to seduce a married woman, saying he "moved on her very heavily".[463]
For Democrats, the saying is, it could happen again. In between appeasing Putin and castigating NATO and tweeting out his unhappiness with the Mueller probe, Trump is doing what he loves most: running for president. His re-election effort is typically Trumpian: sprawling, disjointed, and bursting with confidence. In February, Trump announced that Brad Parscale, the digital guru with the Billy Gibbons beard who led his 2016 online strategy, would be his 2020 campaign manager. Meanwhile, Trump has been crisscrossing the country holding fund-raisers, building up a war chest of $88 million in his first 18 months. Many cast members from the original campaign are expected to reprise their starring roles, including Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, as well as Corey Lewandowski, David Bossie, and Kellyanne Conway. Even Bannon is starting to find his way back into Trump’s orbit after a bitter falling-out. This fall, Trump plans to deliver slashing stump speeches that stoke his base while defining his likely Democratic challengers long before they launch campaigns of their own. He’s already rolled out his campaign slogan: “Keep America Great.”
George W. Bush attempted to put Harriet Miers on the Supreme Court and pushed comprehensive immigration reform, “No Child Left Behind,” the General Motors Bailout, etc. I opposed all those, but never doubted President Bush’s integrity, character, or faith. Frankly, Trump does not have the character or strong Christian faith I prefer in a President. But he is positively angelic compared to his political opponents and the press. Between Trump and his opposition, I would rather vote for him, despite his flaws, than his opponents who want a flawless progressive utopia. Trump is neither an ambassador for my values nor the articulate champion of my principles I would prefer. But he is a safe harbor in a progressive storm that seeks to both destroy my values and upend our constitutional republic.
On June 16, 2015, Trump announced his candidacy for President of the United States at Trump Tower in Manhattan. In the speech, Trump discussed illegal immigration, offshoring of American jobs, the U.S. national debt, and Islamic terrorism, which all remained large priorities during the campaign. He also announced his campaign slogan: "Make America Great Again".[297][296] Trump said his wealth would make him immune to pressure from campaign donors.[376] He declared that he was funding his own campaign,[377] but according to The Atlantic, "Trump's claims of self-funding have always been dubious at best and actively misleading at worst."[378]

Kamala Harris, a freshman California senator, has become a liberal rock star with her tough questioning of Jeff Sessions and other Trump administration officials during Senate hearings. It’s her record as California attorney general, her previous job, that could trip her up: She declined to prosecute OneWest, the bank once headed by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, for alleged foreclosure violations. Still, Ms. Harris seems the most promising of this group — not least because she has less of a voting record her opponents can use against her.
In 2013, Trump was a featured CPAC speaker.[369] In a sparsely-attended speech, he railed against illegal immigration while seeming to encourage immigration from Europe, bemoaned Obama's "unprecedented media protection", advised against harming Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, and suggested that the government "take" Iraq's oil and use the proceeds to pay a million dollars each to families of dead soldiers.[370][371] He spent over $1 million that year to research a possible 2016 candidacy.[372]
BREAKING: Man Steps Forward with Sexual Assault Allegations against Sen. Cory Booker -- With Lawyer's Response to Gateway Pundit (Via ⁦@gatewaypundit⁩) #MakeAmericaGreatAgain #VoteRed2018 #Trump2020https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/10/breaking-man-steps-forward-with-sexual-assault-allegations-against-sen-cory-booker-with-lawyer-response-to-gateway-pundit/ …

With that “again,” Donald Trump crossed a line in American politics that, until his escalator moment, represented a kind of psychological taboo for politicians of any stripe, of either party, including presidents and potential candidates for that position. He is the first American leader or potential leader of recent times not to feel the need or obligation to insist that the United States, the “sole” superpower of Planet Earth, is an “exceptional” nation, an “indispensable” country, or even in an unqualified sense a “great” one. His claim is the opposite. That, at present, America is anything but exceptional, indispensable, or great, though he alone could make it “great again.” In that claim lies a curiosity that, in a court of law, might be considered an admission of guilt. Yes, it says, if one man is allowed to enter the White House in January 2017, this could be a different country, but—and in this lies the originality of the slogan—it is not great now, and in that admission-that-hasn’t-been-seen-as-an-admission lies something new on the American landscape.
It's unpatriotic to suggest that America was ever not great. But for the majority of Americans, American greatness doesn't exist at a calcified point in history. The greatness comes in the striving, in the fact that over and over in the course of the American project, a handful of citizens of an immensely imperfect nation have demanded, "do better," until eventually history bends and we do indeed do better. Greatness isn't something we find "again"; greatness is in the progress, in the moving forward. Donald Trump's promise he'll make us great again is an insult to that legacy of self-examination and of betterment. And when you peel back the rhetoric and face the reality, what he pledges to return us to wasn't actually so great at all. 

Both the Reuters and Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agencies reported on a fourth factory, this one in China’s Anhui province, which had been pumping out Trump 2020 flags and banners at a higher rate than usual, with Reuters quoting a factory manager as stating that her “buyers are located in both China and abroad” and that “she doesn’t know if they are affiliated with Trump’s official campaign or the Republican Party”:
Certainly not for women, or Americans of color, or children, or gay men, or religious minorities. In the bygone days that Trump harkens back to, it wasn't so great to be anything but a straight white Christian male. Trump, of course, doesn't specify when, exactly, America was "great," but at no point in history was this country a better place to live as a female citizen, or a black one, or a very young one, than now. The establishment of the republic? We have "Founding Fathers" for a reason: Men (white ones) were the only ones in charge. Women couldn't vote or own property, and they lost their individual rights when they married, since they were legally absorbed into their husbands. Women couldn't enter into contracts on their own but were still automatically liable for their husbands' debts. White landowners, including many of the Founders, owned and enslaved blacks, who were not only ripped from their homes and forced into servitude, but routinely beaten, raped, and resold away from their families. There's also the small detail that American land was stolen from Native Americans, many of whom were murdered directly or killed off by new germs early on in the European settlement of the United States, and who saw their communities torn apart not just by early American wars but by centuries of colonization and land-grabs.
And yet, in the 1980s, there were still limits to what needed to be said about America. Surveying the planet, you didn’t yet have to refer to us as the “greatest” country of all or as the planet’s sole truly “exceptional” country. Think of such repeated superlatives of our own moment as defensive markers on the declinist slope. The now commonplace adjective “indispensable” as a stand-in for American greatness globally, for instance, didn’t even arrive until Bill Clinton’s secretary of state, Madeleine Albright, began using it in 1996. It only became an indispensable part of the rhetorical arsenal of American politicians, from President Obama on down, a decade-plus into the 21st century when the country’s eerie dispensability (unless you were a junkie for failed states and regional chaos) became ever more apparent.
George W. Bush attempted to put Harriet Miers on the Supreme Court and pushed comprehensive immigration reform, “No Child Left Behind,” the General Motors Bailout, etc. I opposed all those, but never doubted President Bush’s integrity, character, or faith. Frankly, Trump does not have the character or strong Christian faith I prefer in a President. But he is positively angelic compared to his political opponents and the press. Between Trump and his opposition, I would rather vote for him, despite his flaws, than his opponents who want a flawless progressive utopia. Trump is neither an ambassador for my values nor the articulate champion of my principles I would prefer. But he is a safe harbor in a progressive storm that seeks to both destroy my values and upend our constitutional republic.
For this, Democrats can thank (or blame) Donald Trump. His election in 2016 showed that the barriers to entry to the White House weren’t nearly as formidable as political professionals once assumed. More important, Mr. Trump at the moment seems eminently beatable, with an approval rating hovering just south of 40 percent. No other president in the era of approval polling (going back to the 1930s) has been this unpopular at this point in his presidency.
Jump up ^ "Intelligence Report on Russian Hacking". The New York Times. January 6, 2017. p. ii. Retrieved January 8, 2017. We assess Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election. Russia's goals were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency. We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump. We have high confidence in these judgments.
In Duluth, as he stood in front of a sea of red hats, white faces, and blue signs filling the local hockey arena, the frustration melted away. Trump demanded credit for his nuclear summit with Kim Jong Un. (“We had a great meeting, great chemistry.”) He whined that the media would downplay the crowd size. (“Did you see the thousands and thousands of people outside? That will never be reported by the fake news.”) He griped about not being considered a member of the country’s elite. “I have a much better apartment than they do,” he said to the audience. “I’m smarter than they are. I’m richer than they are. I became president and they didn’t.”
When Mike Fleiss, the creator of “The Bachelor” and “Who Wants to Marry a Multimillionaire?” helped pioneer reality television in the early 2000s, he quickly realized that for any show to work, the audience needed to feel invested. “Whenever you’re developing one of these shows, you have to find stakes — true love or a million dollars,” Mr. Fleiss said.
Trump, rallying the GOP base in the northern city of Elko, labeled the Democrat “Sleepy Joe Biden” and “One Percent Joe,” mocking both the size of the crowd at Biden’s event and the former vice president’s past failed presidential campaigns. Biden responded in kind, telling a crowd of several hundred outside the local Culinary Union here that Trump was “shredding” basic decency and making a deliberate effort to divide the country.
But what about the revolt of suburban white voters, especially women? Suburban moms, always a vulnerability for Trump, are especially likely to be swayed by the family-separation policy. Stepien, however, minimized the challenge. “Good policy is good politics. I’ve seen good policy come out of this White House,” he said. “Bottom line is Americans want security. They want to feel safe in the realm of national security and they want to feel economically secure. And on each front he’s delivered.” The White House sees Trump as an asset to mobilize the base. According to Stepien, Trump intends to spend more than 20 days on the campaign trail during the fall election, around the same number that George W. Bush spent in 2002 at the height of his post-9/11 popularity.
On July 15, 2016, Trump announced his selection of Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate.[386] Four days later on July 19, Trump and Pence were officially nominated by the Republican Party at the Republican National Convention.[387] The list of convention speakers and attendees included former presidential nominee Bob Dole, but the other prior nominees did not attend.[388][389]
Kennedy: We are one of the few American companies left making hats. There is a need, a niche, for that American product, and that's what we've been really striving for the last couple of years. It's an incredible opportunity to make this hat for the president of the United States. I think that this hat is an icon for what is going on in the country, and we're really happy to make the hat for the president. Hopefully we can keep this going.

The day after his speech in Phoenix, Trump made his first presidential visit to Nevada (a swing state) for an American Legion event in Reno. Unlike during the previous night's rally, Trump did not attack Governor Brian Sandoval and Senator Dean Heller, two Republican politicians in attendance who have stood in opposition to some of the healthcare proposals championed by the president.[202]
Trump's proposed immigration policies were a topic of bitter and contentious debate during the campaign. He promised to build a more substantial wall on the Mexico–United States border to keep out illegal immigrants and vowed that Mexico would pay for it.[569] He pledged to massively deport illegal immigrants residing in the United States,[570] and criticized birthright citizenship for creating "anchor babies".[571] He said that deportation would focus on criminals, visa overstays, and security threats.[572]

Ms. Klobuchar, a Minnesota senator, claimed national attention as a sort of thinking man’s Sarah Palin. A Yale and University of Chicago Law grad, she is quick with a “Fargo”-accented quip. She’s burnished her liberal bona fides by becoming a reliably lefty voice, just last week teaming up with Mr. Sanders to debate health care on prime-time CNN against the most recent Republican senators trying to repeal Obamacare, Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy. But not that lefty. She hasn’t signed on to Medicare for All and, on CNN, spoke in favor of a bipartisan approach. What’s more, her voting record from 10 years in the Senate — including, most recently her thumbs up to a handful of Mr. Trump’s cabinet nominees — will cling to her like barnacles.

Upon his inauguration as president, Trump delegated the management of his real estate business to his two adult sons, Eric and Don Jr.[52] His daughter Ivanka resigned from the Trump Organization and moved to Washington, D.C., with her husband Jared Kushner. She serves as an assistant to the president,[53] and he is a Senior Advisor in the White House.[54]
Finally, there is the president’s own policies, which could help trigger an economic crisis. Getting into an all-out trade war with China, the second largest economy in the world, is a risky move that could help blow up the global economy, economists say. The Trump administration has also deregulated the financial sector and passed a tax bill that “overwhelmingly benefited the wealthy and worsened inequality,” according to a United Nations report from June. These tax cuts did help juice the economy, but the stimulating effects will run out by 2020, which could then result in a recession (not particularly good timing for the man who signed the bill).
Trump himself began using the slogan formally on November 7, 2012, the day after Barack Obama won his reelection against Mitt Romney. By his own account, Trump first considered "We Will Make America Great", but did not feel like it had the right "ring" to it.[15] "Make America Great" was his next name, but upon further reflection, he felt that it was a slight to America because it implied that America was never great. After selecting "Make America Great Again", Trump immediately had an attorney register it. (Trump later said that he was unaware of Reagan's use in 1980 until 2015, but noted that "he didn't trademark it".)[15] On November 12 he signed an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office requesting exclusive rights to use the slogan for political purposes. It was registered as a service mark on July 14, 2015, after Trump formally began his 2016 presidential campaign and demonstrated that he was using the slogan for the purpose stated on the application.[16][15][17]
Progressives believe Trump is an authoritarian tyranny barely constrained by the rule of law. With a straight face, these same progressives argue the accusations against Kavanaugh are proof of his guilt, he should not be presumed innocent, a lack of witnesses is confirmation he did what they claim, all women must be believed except the ones who defend Kavanaugh, and any dissent is just white male privilege. Progressives may claim President Trump is Caesar at the edge of the Rubicon, but they have embraced the bastard love child of Joseph Stalin and Franz Kafka and enlisted the American political press to smear, defame, and attack anyone who stands in their way.
Formal efforts to start the process of impeachment against Trump, who took office in January 2017, have been initiated by Representatives Al Green and Brad Sherman, both Democrats.[755][756] Other people and groups have asserted that Trump has engaged in impeachable activity during his presidency.[757][758] Talk of impeachment began before Trump took office.[759][760]
Trump's political party affiliation has changed numerous times over the years. He registered as a Republican in Manhattan in 1987,[348] switched to Independent in 1999, Democrat in 2001, and back to Republican in 2009.[348] He made donations to both the Democratic and the Republican party, party committees, and candidates until 2010 when he stopped donating to Democrats and increased his donations to Republicans considerably.[349]
Prior to 2008, “American exceptionalism” appeared in news articles a handful of times a year, but after Obama was elected the references skyrocketed, largely because of a drumbeat from Republicans. Once the tea party wave made John Boehner speaker of the House in 2010, for example, he summarized the growing consensus among Republicans: Obama had turned his back on the Founding Fathers to the point where he “refused to talk about American exceptionalism.” (In fact, in 2009 the president had stated, “I believe in American exceptionalism.”) The phrase’s popularity in GOP talking points—often in attacks on Obama’s “socialist” policies—paralleled the spread of conspiracy theories about his citizenship and supposed jihadi sympathies.
And yet in recent years it has become a commonplace of Republicans and Democrats alike. In other words, as the country has become politically shakier, the rhetoric about its greatness has only escalated in an American version of “the lady doth protest too much.” Such descriptors have become the political equivalent of litmus tests: You couldn’t be president or much of anything else without eternally testifying to your unwavering belief in American greatness.

On January 10, 2017, Politico reported that Trump would be keeping his campaign offices in Trump Tower open in order to lay the groundwork for a re-election campaign.[17] By that time his campaign offices at Trump Tower already included a staff of about ten people led by Republican strategist Michael Glassner.[17][1] Glassner's deputy is John Pence, nephew of Vice President Mike Pence.[1] The campaign staff was focused on data-building and fundraising for a 2020 reelection campaign.[17][45]
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