International Politics United States

Tee-Time for Obama and Trump

The transition from Obama to Trump

Nathan Boyd

Naked Politics Blogger 

As I sit here writing this on the evening of the 9th November after President Obama’s speech we realise that Donald. J. Trump has achieved what most people believed to be impossible, becoming the 45th President of the United States of America, with no experience of elected office. Yes his campaign caused outrage. He threatened to throw his opposition in prison and has a less than perfect past with regard to most things, but the key thing being he was not a politician in the modern sense. All eyes are now on him as President elect until 20th January 2017 when he takes the oath and the Oval Office is truly his. He has reached out to all politicians, asking for support and ideas on how to unite a deeply divided American population, which must surely be his first priority

With the extension of the invitation to the White House by Obama to start a smooth transition, it now spells the start of the work for President Trump’s team, and to an extent a removal of the current President from some of the limelight. So after the meeting on Thursday what can we expect to see next from the current Commander in Chief? I suspect preparing for a life after the White House, with some sense of normality to be expected for him and his whole family, who have spent the last 8 years in the public eye. I can imagine he may even start to enjoy himself even more than he has during his 2 terms, maybe playing more golf, and maybe even on one of Trump’s courses if either one of them are that lucky. We should also expect that he will be publicly supporting Trump to help heal some of the wounds that this election campaign has inflicted across the whole country as we would also hope to see from Secretary Clinton to an extent.

But lets look at the bigger picture across the USA and indeed the Western world. The Republicans now control both branches of the government, whether they can work together successfully is to be seen. With Brexit and a new British Prime Minister on this side of the pond, and with elections across Europe next year I think we can expect to see more results which bring anti-establishment parties and results to public view. What we have seen to an extent is the faltering of the current model of western democracy. Maybe golf is not on Obama’s agenda just yet, sitting down with his party to find out where they go from here is step one, a whole new fresh approach is evidently required. The Democrat party needs to start looking to mid-terms & 2020 fairly soon, where they are going to require a candidate who can not only be strong enough to fight Trump, or quite possibly Mike Pence if all does not go to plan, but also someone who can relate and represent the average Joe as well as the investment banker or military officer. Obama will need to play a key role in this process. A president getting ready to leave office with an approval rating of 56% (9/11/16, Gallup) is not one who should go quietly into the night.

We have already heard mutterings of a second Obama being suggested to run for office, but is that really the right thing? Could you really have three families dominating the office of the President since 1989, it has certainly been suggested that this is not a good idea, and the result of the election shows this to an extent. The idea of a small political elite having a large amount of control has brought the discord to the current system.  I don’t feel we will see any movement on a 2020 candidate publicly for some time as most will want to see what a Trump presidency will look like, and to be seen to be maneuvering this soon after an election could well be seen as an attempt to undermine the office of the President.

Hilary Clinton said that President Elect Trump must be given the chance to lead while admitting that the nation is more deeply divided than they thought. But for now everyone is appears to be singing off the same hymn sheet, and as Obama said “Ultimately we’re all on the same team, we are Americans first, patriots first, we all want what’s best for this country”. So maybe for now a game of golf between the current and elect will have to wait, as I can’t imagine that Obama beating Trump on the golf course will help to make the transition as smooth as American needs at this time.

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