The Swamp Must Be Drained

May 17, 2022 Updated: May 19, 2022

Commentary

The Democrats are increasingly desperate as the return of Donald Trump becomes more likely each week.

They are muddling the sequence of events that got us to the present impasse: Trump ran against the corrupt back-scratching, log-rolling society of the OBushintons—the Clinton pay-to-play schemes, the Biden sales of influence and access, the semi-disguised socialist racism elitism of the Obamas, and the flabby sameness and ineffectuality of the Bush–McCain–Romney–McConnell–Ryan Republicans. Trump sensed the people were dissatisfied with the bipartisan Swamp, and he ran as strenuously against the Bushes and McCain and Romney in 2016 as he did against the Clintons and Obamas.

The anti-Trumpers of both parties, in the most legally questionable presidential election in U.S. history, eased Trump out in 2020 with the aid of 4.8 million harvested ballots, 95 percent of the national political media, and 70 percent of the campaign money, to bring in (unintentionally, one assumes, although there was plenty of warning) the most incompetent regime in the country’s history.

In 2020, the Washington establishment demonstrated the accuracy of Trump’s claims of how corrupt and unscrupulous it was, and Biden has demonstrated that it’s even more incompetent at government than Trump alleged.

The Swamp must be drained, and distasteful though he might be in some ways, probably no one less formidable in his egocentricity and demagogic talents than Trump could drain the Swamp. The Republicans between Reagan and Trump were all inducted into it themselves, and the Republican “Never-Trumpers” are as fierce in their animosity toward the former president as toward the Democrats, and as the Democrats are toward Trump. Only Trump can finish the job.

This is why the latest anti-Trump wheeze is to send Biden and Trump out to pasture together, as if it were an even trade: The Democrats get rid of their two biggest problems, and the Republicans return to being doormats, awarded the White House and the speaker’s chair at times as long as they don’t interrupt the majestic slide into the Democratic socialist paradise (with a permanent free tax-lunch for their rich friends in Wall Street, Silicon Valley, and Hollywood).

Biden is irrelevant and Trump has the stamina of a 40-year-old; the call for joint retirement is bunk on all counts.

Pennsylvania illustrates the political polarization of the country and also provides the solution. The Democrats will nominate a Sandersite leftist for U.S. senator and the Republicans will almost certainly win with a Trumpite—a description that fits all four of their front-runners, and all four are more or less carpetbaggers. The Republican nominee will be another senator whose loyalty is to Trump, if he returns as president, and not to Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell.

The walls are closing in on the Democrats, to use one of their favorite, completely dishonest phrases about Trump when they were trying to sell the gigantic fraud that he had colluded with the Russians in the 2016 election.

The Democrats hid their innocuous candidate in 2020 in his basement on grounds of COVID-19, while using the same justification for drastic changes in key states of voting and vote-counting rules, changes that were often effected illegally, and the judiciary abdicated and refused to judge any of the serious complaints on their merits. It was the most dangerously illegal assault on the integrity of the election process and on the constitutional balance of powers in the country’s history.

The problem is not that both 2020 candidates are now too elderly. The problem is that 2020 and the run-up to it demonstrated that the Swamp is as venal and self-interested and corrupt as Trump said in 2016, and they are back. If we go back to business as usual—a stronger Democrat than Biden and a compliant consensus Republican—the rot of 2016 accelerates.

When the congressional Republicans, though most of them weren’t really supporters of his, appreciated his program, and between the Republican majority in Congress in the first two years and the prerogatives of executive action, Trump got much of his program through, despite unprecedented harassment. The authors of the perfidious fraud of the 2020 election were rescued by Trump’s inept response and the abdication of the judiciary.

Trump inadvertently collaborated with his enemies by bungling the daily COVID-19 briefings, bungling the first debate by his belligerency, and warning about ballot harvesting but not challenging it legally from the outset, comprehensively, and only sending poor Rudy Giuliani out on a trick or treat show when the battle was over.

These were the circumstances that caused Trump to call 250,000 of his supporters to the Ellipse adjacent to the White House on Jan. 6, 2021. He enumerated his grievances against the electoral process and the courts’ failure to try the important cases, and having unsuccessfully urged the mayor of Washington and the speaker of the House of Representatives to provide enhanced security for the Capitol on that day, he urged the crowd to demonstrate at the Capitol but to do so “peacefully and patriotically.” This provoked the second asinine stab at impeachment, now ostensibly to remove Trump from an office that he had already vacated.

Trump thus provoked in four years a 100 percent increase in the number of presidential impeachments that had occurred in the previous 228 years of its history—the march of the criminalization of policy differences. (None of the four was justified.)

The House of Representatives committee to investigate Jan. 6, stuffed with pathological Trump-haters of both parties and from which Nancy Pelosi barred a couple of Trump’s more prominent defenders, will excavate a new low in malicious partisanship and will televise its hearings in June. No one believes them and no one cares; Jan. 6 isn’t the point and wasn’t an insurrection.

There were many months of arrests and interrogations in which it must be assumed that prosecutors resorted extensively to their widespread practice of grossly abusing the plea-bargain rules to suborn and extort perjured inculpatory evidence against their real target, Trump and his organization, with promises of minimal sentences and immunity from prosecution for perjury. This has not turned up anything, and the last thing Trump wanted was anything that could be imputed to him as an attack on constitutional government. That charge is a bit rich coming from this gang of Democrats.

The Democrats have tried to distract the country with the abortion question, but it isn’t working any more than the country believes that Russian leader Vladimir Putin and the oil companies are responsible for the highest gasoline price in American history. Their latest gambit is to try to whip up hysteria one more time on COVID-19, but that won’t fly either. The only person who had anything right about COVID-19 was Trump with his imaginative and determined pursuit of a vaccine.

The Trump-haters of both parties who rattled the windows of Washington when they heaved a sigh of relief at Trump’s departure are only now emerging from denial that he’s about to run over them with a steamroller much larger and more fueled by righteousness than the one they drove over him.

Woke, 1619 revisionism, racist disinformation, and violent protest: All have to be torn up, root and branch. But if Trump does return, he must give less ammunition to his enemies. American history and public policy are not all about him, and the presidency of the United States is such a great office it requires its occupants to behave with a higher level of civility and dignity than Donald Trump often did when he was president.

He will return to that office and do better in it if he’s less needlessly abrasive and self-obsessed.

The country can start again in 2028 with new leaders, a fully house-trained post-Trump Republican Party, and a rebuilt Democratic Party over the Ozymandian wreckage of Biden–Sanders–Harris–Schumer–Pelosi.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Conrad Black
Conrad Black has been one of Canada’s most prominent financiers for 40 years and was one of the leading newspaper publishers in the world. He’s the author of authoritative biographies of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Richard Nixon, and, most recently, “Donald J. Trump: A President Like No Other,” which has been republished in updated form. Please follow Conrad Black with Bill Bennett and Victor Davis Hanson on their podcast Scholars and Sense.