Will Trump play checkers or chess with nomination? – al.com

Chess

Chad R. Jackson is a military veteran, Fairhope resident, and local businessman. He is a self-described conservative libertarian and economic voter.

Trump has never had a bigger bargaining chip with Pelosi and Schumer than he has now. He truly has a rare opportunity to negotiate from a position of strength. Should he decide to move forward with a nomination this week, whomever he nominates will likely become the next Supreme Court Justice and, in the eyes of many, threaten the balance held by Roe v. Wade.

Like it or not Roe v. Wade is the status quo and a delicate compromise for most moderates. Threatening the status quo may cause moderate voters that would otherwise vote Trump to run to the left. The reality is that 7 in 10 Americans support abortion rights. While Trump cannot win without the critical Evangelical voting-block which expects him to appoint pro-life judges, he also cant stand to lose moderates in a tight race against Biden.

What is the solution to this dilemma? Offer a deal to the Democratic leadership. At the very least he catches them off guard and they are then reacting to him, a strong position for a president running for re-election. At this point, they have already publicly stated how critical it is and what extreme measures they would be willing to take in order to deter Trump from filling the vacancy (pack the court, statehood for DC & PR, another impeachment, etc.). Trump can use this to his advantage, and in the process win over moderates and key support from Senators such as Collins, Murkowski, and Romney. Consider the following 3 scenarios:

Scenario 1: Trump Nominates someone to fill the seat. He gains nothing, and stands to lose much. He already has the support of evangelicals; hes not going win more of them over by filling the seat now. He almost certainly will strengthen the fierce opposition against him in Congress and get almost nothing done in the remainder of his term. He will ostracize moderate Senate Republicans such as Collins, Romney, Murkowski, and risks a failed nomination. All of this speaks nothing of the danger of spooking moderate voters that may Vote Trump considering the unpopularity of the riots and unrest. Not to mention, another conservative justice is meaningless if Trump loses and the Dems flip the Senate spurring a campaign to pack the court.

Scenario 2: Trump Offers Democrats a Deal, They Accept. Democrats have already spoken in the strongest terms against filling the vacancy and used this to rally their opposition against Trump. Trump could offer to allow the victor of the election to nominate RBGs replacement on the court in return for a major infrastructure bill and more coronavirus support. Both of these things have large bipartisan support and public support, but have been plagued by political deadlock. If successful, such a break-through will win over much needed moderate support and Trump COULD STILL WIN, thereby picking the successor. He gets to counter the argument that he is not honoring RBGs dying wish, make significant legislative breakthroughs, and win over moderates.

Scenario 3: Trump Offers Democrats a Deal, They Refuse. Should Trump Offer the deal to the Dem leadership and they refuse, the Dems will lose support among their base and Trump looks like he tried and is the reasonable one. After all, Pelosi and Schumer have already spoken out on the grave importance of this vacancy. There is a possibility that If they refuse, they look bad, lose support, and send moderates running to Trump. In which case he fills the vacancy anyway only gaining moderate support. He then has a more legitimate argument to call the Democrats radicals that are unwilling to deal.

In summary, Trump has more to gain by offering a deal to the Democrats than rushing to fill the vacancy. There is very low risk and high reward on his part of he takes scenario 2 or 3. Scenario 1 endangers his support among moderates and therefore his election chances. In scenario 2 and 3, there is still the possibility he gets to fill the vacancy AND gain support amongst the electorate while achieving some significant legislative accomplishments.

So to the president and his advisors, will you play chess or checkers? This is a critical moment. Scenario 2 and 3 would catch EVERYONE off guard and it makes good common sense. What will you do, we are watching...

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Will Trump play checkers or chess with nomination? - al.com

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