Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Predictions for Trump’s First Year

By John Crudele

What’s going to happen in 2017?

I made a very bold call last year in predicting that Donald Trump would win the presidency — or, more precisely, that Hillary Clinton would lose. I’m not feeling quite that daring or lucky when it comes to my outlook for the coming year.

But I’ll still dip my little toe into the shallow end of the forecasting pool. So, here goes nothin’.

I think President-elect Trump will start off smoothly in his relations with other Republicans — pomp and ceremony and all that. But unless Trump calms down both his rhetoric and his policies, there will be friction within just a few months.

Trump’s comments on nuclear weapons proliferation will be only one major issue of contention. Even if other politicians agree with his view that the US can out-nuke anyone else in the world, that won’t be an issue Trump is likely to get much public backing on.

That’s not really a germane topic for this column. But there’s another bombshell issue — that is, the economy.

Trump has called for a massive spending program — mainly for infrastructure improvements throughout the US — that he says will get the economy moving again.

Great idea, if the new president has found a magic way to pay for all this spending that nobody else has thought of.

If he hasn’t, then any big spending bills are likely to be blocked in Congress. Republicans like House Speaker Paul Ryan simply aren’t going to bend on this issue and Trump is going to come up with an empty wallet for his big plans.

Still, the very fact that Trump is talking about adding to the US’ already massive $20 trillion debt load is likely to eventually spook the financial markets and cause interest rates to continue rising.

Just when will that happen? Your guess is as good as mine.

Read the rest here.


  1. "Republicans like House Speaker Paul Ryan simply aren’t going to bend on this issue"

    The same Paul Ryan that has caved on borrow and spend up until now? That one?

  2. No one can pay off the over 20 trillion dollar debt and the debt will continue to accrue even if Trump doesn't spend. At least with Trump when the default or effective default happens there will be some infrastructure to show for it.

  3. I feel like there's about a 75% chance that Trump is a smart enough businessman to know what an economic disaster his protectionist nonsense would cause, so he majorly dials back on it once in power and end up governing like a more conventional Republican.

    But the 25% chance that he doesn't know, or knows and will do it anyway, is far too high for comfort IMO. Imperiling the web of international exchange would be potentially cataclysmic.