Guest Opinion | Our democracy is eroding away

Donald Trump's actions as president have decisively damaged the government and large swaths of America.

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When lobsters are placed into boiling water, due to their brain structure they cannot feel pain.  However, the same cannot be said when Americans witness their current president putting our democracy into hot water – close to boiling – day after day.  How much more can Americans endure?

Many former GOP Presidents, Senators and Governors, former Trump Cabinet and administration officials and six lifelong Republican groups (i.e., Lincoln Project, The Bravery Project, 43 Alumni for Biden, Mitt Romney 2012 Alumni, Right Side PAC and Republican Voters Against Trump) have reacted to Trump’s dishonesty and tyranny-like actions by saying “enough is enough.”

Let’s examine some of the hot water Donald Trump has put our republic in:

  1. America has endured $8.3 trillion of new federal debt since Trump took office, his tax cut has cost taxpayers $2.3 trillion and his trade war debacle has imposed a $1.3 trillion loss to the U.S. Treasury (The Balance, Politico & Forbes).
  2. The conservative Wall Street Journal reported on Sept. 2 America passed the 100 percent debt-to-Gross Domestic Product Index (GDP is the broadest measure of U.S. economic output); the only country in the world whose debt-to-GDP ratio will continue rising after 2021— equivalent to debt-ridden Japan, Italy, and Greece. (Do you still think Trump is good for our economy?)
  3. With Trump’s presidency the Economist Intelligence Democracy Index has now downgraded America to a “flawed democracy,” citing erosion of public trust in government and elected officials.
  4. Trump has not rebuked Russia for their interference in the 2016 or 2020 elections despite evidence from 17 different federal intelligence agencies.
  5. Trump has, unabashedly, downgraded communities with preponderance of color and mocked people along the lines of race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability and military service personnel who died protecting America (Trump called them “suckers,” “losers,” “warmongers” and “pus—-“—Fox News).
  6. org reports an autocratic approach to government continues to dominate Trump’s White House and has dismantled our system of checks and balances by attacking the judiciary, withholding information from Congress, punishing whistleblowers, firing Cabinet members who question his actions and punishing states that have opposed his policies.
  7. Trump knew of the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic on Jan. 3, admitted to Bob Woodward (Feb. 7) the coronavirus was five times deadlier than flu and stated “I wanted to always play it down”, announced (Feb. 4) “my administration will take all necessary steps to safeguard our citizens from this threat” yet said (March 13) “I don’t take responsibility at all,” he never established a national strategy causing 2 million Americans to permanently lose their jobs, made nearly 1,200 misleading claims about the COVID-19 pandemic alone, and brought about 196,479 (and rising) deaths due to unabated neglect of protecting and defending Americans (Fox News, Washington Post, AP News & The Atlantic).
  8. Trump “appreciates support” from far-right conspiracy QAnon and “the very fine people” of neo-Nazis and white supremacists (AP News).
  9. There’s been a historic 88 percent turnover of Trump’s Cabinet and a record-breaking 415 political appointees have resigned or been fired.
  10. Trump has spent 22 percent of his presidency on his golf properties at taxpayers’ expense exceeding $1 million, despite saying (Aug. 8, 2016) “I’m not going to have time to play golf” (Golf News Net).
  11. Twenty percent of Trump’s 20,000-plus “alternative fact” statements were Tweets; 80 percent were made publicly (The Hill and Washington Post).
  12. Trump has failed to deliver on 91.2 percent of his 282 campaign promises (Politifact).

After reading these facts, are you ready to say, “I can’t take four more years of Trump?”  If so, God bless America.  Long live the republic!

—Steve Corbin, Professor Emeritus of Marketing, University of Northern Iowa

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