One of the claims that President Trump hailed during the campaign was that he wanted to “Drain the Swamp” in D.C. We heard many times from him and his surrogates about going to Washington to drain the swamp. Those at his rallies could even be heard chanting, “Drain the Swamp."
It played great to the masses, but is it really possible? If all things remain equal, is this possible?
Well no – no it is not. First, without getting into detail, some of Trump’s cabinet picks belie his promise – although he never actually stated that, “I promise to Drain the Swamp.”
His choices of Sessions as Attorney General, Scott Pruitt at EPA, Tom Price at HHS, and certainly (we hope) the new Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch appear, at first blush, to be swamp drainers. But Reince Preibus, Steve Mnuchin at Treasury, and Secretary of State Tillerson seem at best to be status quo swampists.
But it, of course, can’t all be left to Trump. There is no president who is capable of doing all the heavy lifting when it comes to this monumental and possibly insurmountable task. He must get help from the legislative branch.
This will be a lot tougher. Members of Congress and the Senate understand full well that presidents can only helm the ship for a maximum of eight years, while their careers as “public servants” can span decades. They also understand that incumbency is a great thing – that once they’re in, it’s difficult to get them out. In 2014, over 96% of incumbents won reelection, and historically, it runs around 90%.
The game is effectively rigged in their favor, if they stay in Washington long enough to master the game. And to master game, one must succumb to D.C. corruption.
We conservatives know all too well what happens to legislators who spend too many years in Washington. I said it before, but it bears repeating that, in my opinion, even Jesus Christ could be corrupted by spending too much time in D.C.