If the 2016 presidential election were actually about genuine political policies, Donald Trump would defeat Hillary Clinton in one of the biggest landslides of all time. But the mainstream media–with, alas, considerable help from Donald himself–has made it about anything but.
Nevertheless, we shouldn’t let those disgracefully biased, born again-bluenoses of the Newswoisie or Donald’s obvious neurotic need to respond to anything and everything deter us from examining the proposals in his Saturday speech at Gettysburg.
That speech put forth some of the more intelligent and creative ideas to be before the American public in years. These proposals, contained in what Trump calls his “Contract with the American Voter,” deserve to be heard and seriously debated in these last weeks before the election.
Undoubtedly the Newswoisie will do their best to squelch them, panicked that some innocent citizen might deign to compare Trump’s “Contract” to the unremitting banality and moral vacuousness (“please see my website”) of the Hillary Clinton campaign. But it is our duty — all of us — to expose this “Contract” to as many people as possible and give the American public a chance to consider it, even if their so-called “thought leaders” do their best to obscure it.
Let’s first examine what the Daily Mail calls Trump’s “anti-corruption to-do list” from the “Contract”:
1. Constitutional Amendment to impose term limits on members of Congress
2. Hiring freeze on federal employees to reduce the workforce through attrition
3. Requirement to eliminate two federal regulations for every new one
4. Five-year-ban on White House and Congressional officials becoming lobbyists
5. Lifetime ban on White House officials lobbying for foreign governments
6. Complete ban on foreign lobbyists raising money for American election
Term limits is nothing new, of course, but Trump’s packaging it with these other proposals undermines the longtime criticism of such an amendment — that Congressional term limits would leave the unelected lifers in the bureaucracy with all the power, able to wreak more havoc than they already do. Trump wants to cut back their numbers through a freeze, diminishing their strength through attrition. More than that, he adds a stricture that for every new regulation they propose, two must be eliminated. How smart is that!
The ban on various kinds of lobbying, foreign and domestic, by “retired” public officials is also an idea whose time has come. Would all this come to pass if Trump were elected? It’s hard to say, but when he states this is the first moment in years in which real change is possible, he’s telling the truth. If not now, when? In fact, if not now, maybe not for another millennium — and maybe not here, in the USA.
The second part of his “Contract” has seven proposals to protect the American worker.
One and two concern trade — his well-known desire to renegotiate NAFTA and his equally well-known opposition to TPP (publicly adopted by Clinton, but privately abhorred by her, according to WikiLeaks). I don’t know much of the details of our trade deals, but if they were negotiated anywhere near as abysmally as our foreign policy deals (Iran, North Korea), they certainly merit reconsideration.
The third, with which I am less impressed, is his intention to brand China as a currency manipulator. I’m not sure that’s the best approach, but who knows? The fourth, however, is an extremely worthwhile proposal for the U.S. secretary of Commerce and the U.S. trade representative to take hard legal lines against the trade abuses that hurt our workers.
Five, six and seven speak for themselves:
- 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
- SEVENTH, cancel billions in payments to U.N. climate change programs and use the money to fix America’s water and environmental infrastructure.
All of this is great (privately Hillary doesn’t object to six, as we now know from WikiLeaks) but I particularly like seven. Trump and his advisors are “clever boots,” redirecting UN climate money (nothing has a greater potential for corruption) to fixing our own environmental infrastructure. Bravo. (And don’t have a breakdown, Jill Stein. This is more “environmental” than anything the UN kleptocrats will ever touch.)
Trump follows this with five proposals for restoring security and the constitutional rule of law. I’m going on for longer than I expected, but key among these are pledges on immigration and the defunding of sanctuary cities, which should please Bill O’Reilly (and many Americans, not just conservatives), and yet another reiteration of the Scalia-inspired list of judges from which he will make his Supreme Court nominations.
Considering the number of times Trump has done this — naming his nominees in writing — I am perplexed by the Republicans who still doubt his word on this. Their skepticism at this point strikes me as an around-the-bend version of Trump Derangement Syndrome. But we all have our neuroses, myself included.
The last part of the contract contains ten pieces of legislation Trump intends to sponsor during his first “100 days.” All seem straight from the conservative playbook (you should read them), amplifying the foregoing, except for 6. Affordable Childcare and Eldercare Act that might be construed as a backdoor entitlement. Even so, Trump is well past Reagan’s famous 80% minimum for agreement among Republicans. He’s closer to 90-95%.
His tax program is part of this legislation.
A middle-class family with 2 children will get a 35% tax cut. The current number of brackets will be reduced from 7 to 3, and tax forms will likewise be greatly simplified. The business rate will be lowered from 35 to 15 percent…
In sum, the “Contract with the American Voter” is nothing short of spectacular under the increasingly ominous circumstances of 2016 and a worthy sequel to the “Contract with America” (perhaps Newt Gingrich had a hand). We can only hope that the American people get a chance to review it — that it won’t be overwhelmed by the media’s self-serving fixation on scandal and Trump’s (sigh) frustrating cooperation with them — because if the people do, I am certain the vast majority will approve of Trump’s sensible proposals and elect him president.
Substance or scandal? That is the dilemma our country faces at the end of October 2016.
Roger L. Simon is an award-winning novelist, Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and co-founder of PJ Media. His latest book is I Know Best: How Moral Narcissism Is Destroying Our Republic, If It Hasn’t Already.