Of all of the people who ate crow after Donald Trump’s historic victory on Tuesday, few ate a larger portion than Charles Krauthammer.
The non-practicing psychiatrist had been brutal to the GOP nominee, calling his behavior “beyond narcissism” and his temperament that of an “undeveloped schoolyard bully.” Yet, in the election post-mortem on Fox News Wednesday, Krauthammer praised Trump for successfully appealing to the Reagan Democrats and bringing them back to the GOP.
Krauthammer also said something about Barack Obama that could have the outgoing president seeking therapy.
“Remember (Obama) said two years ago, ‘I’m not on the ballot, but my policies are?’” Krauthammer reminded the audience. “And he got shellacked. And then he said this year, ‘My legacy’s on the ballot.’ And I think he’s going to lose it. I think it’s going to be undone, much of it, in the first hundred days, starting with Obamacare. Everything he signed, all the executive orders, are gone.”
Krauthammer then laid bare for Democrats the devastating truth about the president who took every opportunity to weaken the Constitution and diminish congressional authority: “I think he ends up a historic parenthesis. He has left the Democrats in ruins at every level. The governorships, the state houses, the House, and the Senate, and now the White House. He’s been a wrecking ball for Democrats and I think he deserves a lot of the credit for Trump’s victory.”
“Historic parenthesis” — two words that cast the future of Obama’s eight years as little more than an asterisk.
You can watch the Krauthammer segment by clicking on the video below.
“Look, there’s no question what Donald Trump did was historic,” Krauthammer said about the president-elect. “The Reagan Democrats, the old white working class that Reagan had corralled had gone away and nobody was listening to them. And he tuned into that, and that’s how he won the election.”
He added that far from hurting other Republicans, Trump actually had coattails and brought in Republicans in the Senate who would help Trump undo so much of Obama’s agenda.
Plenty of #NeverTrump conservatives were seen dining at Crow-fil-A in the early morning hours of Wednesday onwards. Perhaps most notable is the lachrymose Glenn Beck, who — after calling Trump “dangerously unhinged” — said that he “will give whoever is president our support” and that he would reach out to Trump, according to the Washington Times.
Few, however, has made such an abrupt turnaround as Krauthammer, an intellectual heavyweight of the conservative movement. As late as August, Krauthammer wrote in his Washington Post column that “Trump’s hypersensitivity and unedited, untempered Pavlovian responses are, shall we say, unusual in both ferocity and predictability.
“This is beyond narcissism. I used to think Trump was an 11-year-old, an undeveloped schoolyard bully. I was off by about 10 years,” he continued. “His needs are more primitive, an infantile hunger for approval and praise, a craving that can never be satisfied. He lives in a cocoon of solipsism where the world outside himself has value — indeed exists — only insofar as it sustains and inflates him.”
That’s quite a long way to come in three months.
It’s hard to see him being wrong about his historical predictions involving President Obama, however. The problem with trying to transform America so dramatically by using a pen and a phone is that it requires a president and a Congress that can and will maintain it. Trump is now president-elect, and he has his own pen and phone — and the ink and carrier are of a far different sort than the ones Obama used.
So much of Obama’s agenda, particularly as it relates to immigration and federal gun control, rests solely on the president’s order. Obamacare always depended on a Democrat president or a Democrat Congress. All will likely be washed away within a hundred days of Trump taking office.
What will Obama’s legacy be? His slick electioneering might secure a place in the annals of campaigning. Legislatively, however, America is about to undo eight years of divisive (and frequently unconstitutional) rule.
That sounds pretty parenthetical to me.
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