Almost everyone is astonished at Trump’s victory. It is said that even Trump was astonished. And of course now everyone is explaining how it happened, although the explanations are different. And everyone is talking about the deep cleavages that the election created (or it reflected?) in the U.S. body politic.
I am not going to add one more such analysis to the long list I’m already tired of reading them. I just want to concentrate on two issues: What are the consequences of this victory of Trump (1) for the United States, and (2) for U.S. power in the rest of the world.
Internally, the results, no matter how you measure them, move the United States significantly to the right. It doesn’t matter that Trump actually lost the national popular vote. And it doesn’t matter that if a mere 70,000 votes in three states (something under 0.09% of the total vote cast) had been lacking to Trump, Hillary Clinton would have won.
What does matter is that the Republicans have gained what is called the trifecta – control of the Presidency, both Houses of Congress, and the Supreme Court. And while the Democrats might win back the Senate and even the Presidency in four or eight years, the Republicans will hold on to a Supreme Court majority for a very much longer time.