Key Words: How Trump’s ‘startling blunt exercise in socialism’ is overlooked by his backers
Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale last week tweeted out “Socialism SUCKS” — two words capturing a theme that is familiar to anybody who tunes in to Fox News or the president’s Twitter TWTR, +0.70% feed.
But one former GOP senator and governor on Monday pointed out what could be an uncomfortable truth for Trump supporters:
‘It may shock Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), but she seems to have simpatico in the president.’
That is Judd Gregg, the New Hampshire Republican who once served as chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, sharing his thoughts in an editorial for The Hill.
Obviously, with tweets like this — and there are many — Trump has made it clear that he’s not a big fan of Warren:
But Gregg says the two have common ground when it comes to philosophy.
“The president seems to have a definite tinge of socialism in his chaotic policy closet,” he explained, laying out all Trump actions that “can best be described as being almost, occasionally, pretty close to socialist.”
Trump’s “me-first, me-only policy” when it comes to global trade, for instance, is “antithetical to the philosophy that has underpinned Republican policy in these areas for years,” Gregg wrote. “Instead, they’re consistent with the policies have given rise to populist politics of the left.”
Trump telling American companies to stop doing business in China is the “type of edict that might come from the leadership of the old Soviet Union, Cuba or even today’s communist China,” he said. “It is the ultimate in government interference with the free market.”
His belief that he has the right to direct American commerce “is a startling blunt exercise in socialism,” Gregg added. The tariffs, seen as a massive new tax on the U.S. consumer, are also right out of the socialist playbook, he said.
“The fact that U.S. companies need to compete in an international market requires them to be international is lost on this president and his people,” he said. “They set up a clear list of businesses they deem enemies of the state, and they do not hesitate to use the powers they have to berate them.”
Other socialist-leaning ideologies espoused by the president that Gregg lists in his piece include the desire for a weaker dollar DXY, +0.19% as well as the push for running up debts and deficits.
Ultimately, however, Trump can’t really be put in a box.
“He doesn’t have any core policies, just those ideas that he happens to stumble onto while watching some late night talk show,” Gregg wrote. “So it is not possible to hang a title on him that claims he is this or that.”