In 1999, Trump filed an exploratory committee to seek the nomination of the Reform Party for the 2000 presidential election.[354][355] A July 1999 poll matching him against likely Republican nominee George W. Bush and likely Democratic nominee Al Gore showed Trump with seven percent support.[356] Trump eventually dropped out of the race, but still went on to win the Reform Party primaries in California and Michigan.[357][358] After his run, Trump left the party due to the involvement of David Duke, Pat Buchanan, and Lenora Fulani.[354] Trump also considered running for president in 2004.[359] In 2005, Trump said that he voted for George W. Bush.[360] In 2008, he endorsed Republican John McCain for president.[361]
Did you ever wonder why Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan took such root among the Republican base? Did it symbolize a return to an age when wages were higher and jobs more secure? Or was it coded racial language designed to signal a rollback to a time when people of color (and women) knew their place? In the soul-searching and recrimination among Democrats after Hillary Clinton’s defeat, both theories have their champions.

Jump up ^ Jan, Tracy (October 14, 2016). "More women accuse Trump of aggressive sexual behavior". The Boston Globe. Trump has been confronted with a slew of allegations of sexual misconduct over the past week, starting with a report in The Washington Post of a 2005 tape featuring him bragging about forcibly kissing women and grabbing them by the genitals.
In December 2017, Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which cut the corporate tax rate to 21 percent, lowered personal tax brackets, increased child tax credit, doubled the estate tax threshold to $11.2 million, and limited the state and local tax deduction to $10,000.[497] The reduction in individual tax rates ends in 2025. While people would generally get a tax cut, those with higher incomes would see the most benefit.[498][499] Households in the lower or middle class would also see a small tax increase after the tax cuts expire. The bill is estimated to increase deficits by $1.5 trillion over 10 years.[500][501]
Trump said he was "not sure" whether he ever asked God for forgiveness, stating "If I do something wrong, I just try and make it right. I don't bring God into that picture." He said he tries to take Holy Communion as often as possible because it makes him "feel cleansed".[55] While campaigning, Trump referred to The Art of the Deal as his second favorite book after the Bible, saying, "Nothing beats the Bible."[65] The New York Times reported that evangelical Christians nationwide thought "that his heart was in the right place, that his intentions for the country were pure."[66]
“I felt that jobs were hurting,” he said. “I looked at the many types of illness our country had, and whether it’s at the border, whether it’s security, whether it’s law and order or lack of law and order. Then, of course, you get to trade, and I said to myself, ‘What would be good?’ I was sitting at my desk, where I am right now, and I said, ‘Make America Great Again.’ ”
If she runs, Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts senator, would instantaneously be the Democrats’ putative front-runner. Her anti-corporate agenda has made her a fund-raising powerhouse, and she seems to have found an ideological sweet spot between the centrist Clinton and populist Sanders factions. Additionally, thanks to the “Nevertheless she persisted” meme, she’s become a feminist heroine.
Trump acquired his third casino in Atlantic City, the Taj Mahal, in 1988 while it was under construction, through a complex transaction with Merv Griffin and Resorts International.[157] It was completed at a cost of $1.1 billion and opened in April 1990.[158][159] The project was financed with $675 million in junk bonds[160] and was a major gamble by Trump.[161] The project underwent debt restructuring the following year,[162] leaving Trump with 50 percent ownership.[163] Facing "enormous debt", he sold his airline, Trump Shuttle, and his 282-foot (86 m) megayacht, the Trump Princess, which had been indefinitely docked in Atlantic City while leased to his casinos for use by wealthy gamblers.[164][165][166]
In December 2017, Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which cut the corporate tax rate to 21 percent, lowered personal tax brackets, increased child tax credit, doubled the estate tax threshold to $11.2 million, and limited the state and local tax deduction to $10,000.[497] The reduction in individual tax rates ends in 2025. While people would generally get a tax cut, those with higher incomes would see the most benefit.[498][499] Households in the lower or middle class would also see a small tax increase after the tax cuts expire. The bill is estimated to increase deficits by $1.5 trillion over 10 years.[500][501]

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).


Not everyone is on board with this program. With eyes on 2020, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are pushing Trump to adopt more moderate positions. Kushner aggressively lobbied his father-in-law to embrace prison reform, organizing a White House visit with Kim Kardashian West and consulting with CNN host Van Jones. Jones told me Trump liked the positive media coverage that followed his commuting the sentence in early June of low-level drug offender Alice Marie Johnson at the urging of Kardashian and Kushner. “Trump was pleasantly surprised,” Jones said. According to a former White House official, Kushner and Ivanka have also been polling more inclusive language on transgender rights. “The 2020 campaign is about the rehabilitation of Jared and Ivanka,” the source said. In late June, one outside Trump adviser explained to Kushner that the population of white voters shrinks by one million every year. Kushner expressed alarm at the speed of the changing demographics, a source familiar with his thinking told me. (A Trump official denied that Jared and Ivanka are playing any role in polling, campaign activities, or decision making.)
Bannon compared this point in the midterm re-election to August 2016, when Trump trailed Hillary Clinton by double digits and everyone expected him to be trounced. Except this time he’s effectively running against Nancy Pelosi, the former (and perhaps future) House Speaker, who would lead a hypothetical impeachment crusade. “She’s the Hillary,” Bannon said. “She’s got some of the same tendencies!” That’s where the specter of impeachment comes into place. “You want her program? Impeach Trump and you got her,” Bannon explained. “When you focus on impeachment, it’s a game changer. It’s an emotional issue that raises the stakes.” To hold on to the House and Senate in November, Bannon said, Trump needs to follow the same strategy he employed in the home stretch of 2016: drive hard toward his base. “This is a ‘deplorable-plus electorate.’ What I mean is, it’s deplorables plus Reagan Democrats and guys who voted for Trump who vote never. You bring them out in an off year.” I asked Bannon about the risk of losing suburban women. He shrugged off the voting bloc as immaterial, a thing of the past. “The Republican college-educated woman is done,” he said. “They’re gone. They were going anyway at some point in time. Trump triggers them. This is now the Trump movement.” Bannon said that Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court will help win back some suburban Republicans. “Republicans will come home. Dude, you got Gorsuch and Kavanaugh back to back,” he told me. At a minimum, Kavanaugh’s nomination will “ensure they don’t vote for Democrats.”
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.

Another sign that the economy is weaker than it first appears is the so-called yield curve, which measures the difference between interest rates on short-term U.S. government bonds and long-term government bonds. In a good economy, the rate for long-term bonds is significantly higher than short-term bonds, but recently long-term bonds have been slow to rise while short-term interest rates have been rising due to Federal Reserve policies. The yield curve has been an accurate predictor of past recessions, and it's now close to what it was shortly before the Great Recession.


Trump supports a broad interpretation of the Second Amendment and says he is opposed to gun control in general,[561][562] although his views have shifted over time.[563] Trump opposes legalizing recreational marijuana but supports legalizing medical marijuana.[564] He favors capital punishment,[565][566] as well as the use of waterboarding and "a hell of a lot worse" methods.[567][568]

Every senator looks in the mirror and sees a future president. But these days, for Democrats at least, it’s not just members of Capitol Hill’s upper chamber who are picturing themselves sitting in the Oval Office. Congressmen, governors, mayors, even people who hold no elected office — men and women at seemingly every rung of the political ladder, including no rung at all — are suddenly eyeing the White House.
The first is that he can barely contain his affection for — and apparent desire to return to — political campaigning. This is a guy who is just days away from being sworn in as the 45th president, and he's already talking gleefully about the next campaign. (And if you don't think he's gleeful, read Tumulty's whole interview; it's really something.)
If Trump departs, another circus is waiting to come to town. Already, celebrities have been quietly positioning themselves. Mark Cuban has met with strategists, a source told me. And Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has reportedly considered a run. “If Trump doesn’t run for re-election in 2020—which he will—then either Mark Cuban or `The Rock’ will be the G.O.P. nominee, and either one will win,” Nunberg said.
Trump's presidential ambitions were generally not taken seriously at the time.[365] Trump's moves were interpreted by some media as possible promotional tools for his reality show The Apprentice.[363][366][367] Before the 2016 election, The New York Times speculated that Trump "accelerated his ferocious efforts to gain stature within the political world" after Obama lampooned him at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner in April 2011.[368]

Wrong. Republicans are passionate. Don't misjudge that as anger. We are passionate about our country, our way of life and the rule of law. We are passionate about freedom and liberty. We are passionate about a limited federal government. It's the Democrats who are angry that they are out of power. That's it. They are not in power so they are angry. They are harassing people who they disagree with, they are forming mobs....


Trump's presidential ambitions were generally not taken seriously at the time.[365] Trump's moves were interpreted by some media as possible promotional tools for his reality show The Apprentice.[363][366][367] Before the 2016 election, The New York Times speculated that Trump "accelerated his ferocious efforts to gain stature within the political world" after Obama lampooned him at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner in April 2011.[368]

During his presidency, Trump ordered a travel ban on citizens from several Muslim-majority countries, citing security concerns; after legal challenges, the Supreme Court upheld the policy's third revision. He signed tax cut legislation which also rescinded the individual insurance mandate provision of the Affordable Care Act and opened the Arctic Refuge for oil drilling. He enacted a partial repeal of the Dodd-Frank Act that had imposed stricter constraints on banks in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. He pursued his America First agenda in foreign policy, withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations, the Paris Agreement on climate change, and the Iran nuclear deal. He recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and imposed import tariffs on various goods, triggering a trade war with China.
The first is that he can barely contain his affection for — and apparent desire to return to — political campaigning. This is a guy who is just days away from being sworn in as the 45th president, and he's already talking gleefully about the next campaign. (And if you don't think he's gleeful, read Tumulty's whole interview; it's really something.)
Honduran migrants climb a border fence, in Tecun Uman, Guatemala, Friday, Oct. 19, 2018. Migrants broke down the gates at the border crossing and began streaming toward a bridge into Mexico. After arriving at the tall, yellow metal fence some clambered atop it and on U.S.-donated military jeeps. Young men began violently tugging on the barrier and finally succeeded in tearing it down. Oliver de Ros, AP

One immediate consequence of this would be that it would give guys like Ben Sasse and Mike Lee, who sometimes like to position themselves as more high-minded than Trump, the opportunity to actually vote against the president sometimes. Any Trump-Pelosi deal could easily weather a dozen or so defections from the right that would allow that crew to own the brand of “true conservatives” without needing to do anything to check Trump’s corruption or authoritarianism.

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.
In January 2018, The New York Times reported that Trump had ordered Mueller to be fired in June, after learning that Mueller was investigating possible obstruction of justice, but backed down after White House Counsel Don McGahn said he would quit;[728] Trump called the report "fake news".[729][730] The New York Times reported in April 2018 that Trump had again wanted the investigation shut down in early December 2017, but stopped after learning the news reports he based his decision on were incorrect.[731] In April 2018, following an FBI raid on the office and home of Trump's private attorney Michael Cohen, Trump mused aloud about firing Mueller.[732]
After Donald Trump popularized the use of the phrase, the phrase and modifications of it became widely used to refer to his election campaign and his politics. Trump's primary opponents, Ted Cruz and Scott Walker, began using "Make America Great Again" in speeches, inciting Trump to send cease-and-desist letters to them. Trump claimed after the election that the hats "were copied, unfortunately. It was knocked off by 10 to one [...] but it was a slogan, and every time somebody buys one, that's an advertisement".[15] Cruz later sold hats featuring, "Make Trump Debate Again", in response to Trump's boycotting the Iowa January 28, 2016 debate.[29]
Jump up ^ Thomas, Pierre (June 19, 2017). "Where things stand with special counsel Mueller's Russia probe". ABC News. According to sources familiar with the process ... [a]n assessment of evidence and circumstances will be completed before a final decision is made to launch an investigation of the president of the United States regarding potential obstruction of justice.
In late January 2017 several members of Trump's 2016 campaign staff formed America First Policies, a pro-Trump political nonprofit. Those involved included former deputy campaign chairs Rick Gates and David Bossie. Brad Parscale[258] and Katrina Pierson were also involved. Additionally involved were Nick Ayers and Marty Obst, both of whom served as advisors to Mike Pence during the 2016 campaign.[259] Trump's former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Katie Walsh has also joined the organization.[101] Near the end of May, members of the organization (including Walsh) participated in meetings at the RNC's D.C. offices with members Trump's family to discuss campaign strategy.[101][102][103]
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.
Stepien, a 40-year-old New Jersey operative, is an Establishment Republican out of central casting: trim, well dressed, and with impeccable hair. He was recruited to join the Trump campaign in August 2016, after befriending Kushner, and his current job is to effectively reverse-engineer a method to Trump’s madness. Despite the gloomy outlook for Republicans—a recent Real Clear Politics poll average showed Democrats with a six-point advantage—Stepien did his best to spin the White House’s message that Republicans could limit the damage in the midterms. “This is not an easy time to run and win as a Republican,” Stepien conceded. “[Trump] is trying to get all the people who voted for him in 2016 back out to the polls in 2018. The goal is to make those people who are presidential-year voters into midterm-election voters.”
As a candidate Trump questioned whether he, as president, would automatically extend security guarantees to NATO members,[654] and suggested that he might leave NATO unless changes are made to the alliance.[655] As president, he reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to NATO in March 2017.[656] However, he has repeatedly accused fellow NATO members of paying less than their fair share of the expenses of the alliance.[657]
The first is that he can barely contain his affection for — and apparent desire to return to — political campaigning. This is a guy who is just days away from being sworn in as the 45th president, and he's already talking gleefully about the next campaign. (And if you don't think he's gleeful, read Tumulty's whole interview; it's really something.)
One problem for Democrats going into 2020 is that Trump makes it almost impossible not to respond to his daily outrages. “He’s sucked all the oxygen out of the room,” Bannon says. “They’re in a Kafka-esque nightmare right now. There’s no exit. I just love it.” Democrats have yet to develop a cohesive message and a consensus about whether the best way to defeat Trump is from the left or the middle. Doug Jones and Conor Lamb ran as moderates in deep red Alabama and Pennsylvania. But Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s upset win in New York over Speaker-in-waiting Joe Crowley gives progressives an argument that the Bernie Sanders wing of the party is ascendant. Dan Pfeiffer told me the problem for Democrats is how to balance the need to drive the base while trying to win back working-class voters Trump peeled off in places like Michigan and Wisconsin. “We’re going to have to figure out how to get the Obama coalition that did not turn out, plus win back midwestern states while improving performance in rural states,” he said.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.

An economic downturn would send Trump’s electoral prospects into a tailspin. Just as incumbent presidents like Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan have benefited from strong economies in the past, incumbent presidents like Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush have seen their re-election bids derailed by weak economies, whether from the stagflation of the 1970s or the rising unemployment of the early 1990s. And given that Trump's approval rating has been quite low despite a booming economy, it might take a historic dive if things turn south.
In January 2017, American intelligence agencies—the CIA, the FBI, and the NSA, represented by the Director of National Intelligence—jointly stated with "high confidence" that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 presidential election to favor the election of Trump.[697][698] In March 2017, FBI Director James Comey told Congress that "the FBI, as part of our counterintelligence mission, is investigating the Russian government's efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. That includes investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government, and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia's efforts."[699] Later, in testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee on June 8, he affirmed he has "no doubt" that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, adding "they did it with purpose and sophistication".[700]
During his campaign, Trump repeatedly vowed to repeal and replace Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA or "Obamacare").[548][549] Shortly after taking office, he urged Congress to repeal and replace it. In May of that year, the House of Representatives voted to repeal it.[550] Over the course of several months' effort, however, the Senate was unable to pass any version of a repeal bill.[551] Trump has expressed a desire to "let Obamacare fail", and the Trump administration has cut the ACA enrollment period in half and drastically reduced funding for advertising and other ways to encourage enrollment.[552][553][554] The tax reform Trump signed into law at the end of his first year in office effectively repealed the individual health insurance mandate that was a major element of the Obamacare health insurance system; this repeal is scheduled to be implemented in 2019.[555][556][557]
In 2013, New York State filed a $40 million civil suit against Trump University; the suit alleged that the company made false statements and defrauded consumers.[209][212] In addition, two class-action civil lawsuits were filed in federal court relating to Trump University; they named Trump personally as well as his companies.[213] During the presidential campaign, Trump criticized presiding Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel, alleging bias in his rulings because of his Mexican heritage.[214][215] Shortly after Trump won the presidency, the parties agreed to a settlement of all three pending cases, whereby Trump paid a total of $25 million and denied any wrongdoing.[216][217]
His political positions have been described as populist,[398][399][400] and some of his views cross party lines. For example, his economic campaign plan calls for large reductions in income taxes and deregulation,[401] consistent with Republican Party policies, along with significant infrastructure investment,[402] usually considered a Democratic Party policy.[403][404] According to political writer Jack Shafer, Trump may be a "fairly conventional American populist when it comes to his policy views", but he attracts free media attention, sometimes by making outrageous comments.[405][406]

Although Democrats are united in their opposition to President Trump, the fundamental party cleavage runs between populists and centrists. The Democratic presidential nominee in 2020 will be the person who either finds a way to appeal to both wings or, just as likely, divines which wings represent the greater number of primary voters. Following is a guide to some of the potential candidates — and the political bets they’ll be making.

In July, the United States and China imposed tariffs on $34 billion of each other's goods,[517][518] expanded to $50 billion in August.[519] In September the U.S. introduced a 10% tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, poised to increase to 25% by the end of the year, and threatened further tariffs on an additional $267 billion if China retaliates.[520] China countered the move with a 10% tariff on $60 billion of US imports,[521] which combined with the previous round of tariffs, covers almost all $110 billion of U.S. imports to China.[520]
I find myself in an odd position where, for the first time, I see myself, one of the original so-called “Never Trump conservatives,” voting for President Trump in 2020. I have inevitably concluded at times that Trump would do something to push me away from him. He has not disappointed on that front from tariffs to character issues. But now I do not see how anyone else can offer a more compelling alternative to the President. Each time the President does something I do not like, his opponents play a game of “hold my beer.”
None of the Chinese factory owners and managers quoted in the July 2018 news reports either affirmed or denied that the Trump campaign itself had been responsible for the significant increase in orders in recent months, and none of them identified anyone else as being a major customer, so we do not know who was behind orders for the many thousands of “Trump 2020” flags produced in China in the first half of 2018.
"Make America Great Again" (abbreviated as MAGA) is a campaign slogan used in American politics that was popularized by Donald Trump in his successful 2016 presidential campaign. Ronald Reagan used the similar slogan "Let's Make America Great Again" in his successful 1980 presidential campaign. Democratic pollster Douglas Schoen has called Trump's use of the phrase as "probably the most resonant campaign slogan in recent history," citing large majorities of Americans who believed the country was in decline.[1][2] The slogan has become a pop culture phenomenon, seeing widespread use and spawning numerous variants in the arts, entertainment and politics.

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.


When he filed mandatory financial disclosure forms with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) in July 2015, Trump claimed a net worth of about $10 billion;[99] however FEC figures cannot corroborate this estimate because they only show each of his largest buildings as being worth "over $50 million", yielding total assets worth more than $1.4 billion and debt over $265 million.[100] Trump reported a yearly income of $362 million for 2014[99] and $611 million from January 2015 to May 2016.[101]
At two years into his term the base of support he grew to support his candidacy stands almost unmoved from his inauguration at 87%. The only President in the modern era that bests him was George W. Bush in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. His support is largely based upon promises kept in numbers of areas but his particularly aggressive appointments of judges in the appellate system, as well as the Supreme Court of The United States have already secured pro-life, and pro-religious liberties wins. If he does not have the chance to place another appointment to the Supreme Court before the 2018 mid-terms, this becomes an especially effective campaign focus for 2020. The difference then will be that he has a record of delivering on this promise to demonstrate—whereas in 2016 never-Trumpers never believed he’d fulfill this promise. But proving people wrong has been one of President Trump’s most endearing features since gaining office.

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.
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]
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