The New Yearís celebrations is usually considered a time of renewal and recommitment to our ideals, our family and our community. This time however, there is a political cloud that has been building up since the 2016 presidential campaigns.
President Donald Trump is getting impeached by Congress as a Christmas present to many non-supporters and a trial on these charges forms part of the New Year activities. His indictment of sorts by the House of Representatives on the charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress will play out in a trial juried by the United States Senate that is in Republican hands and where he is expected not to be convicted.
The impeachment process is laying bare the great division our country is undergoing. Polls indicate that half of the people want impeachment and removal from office and half do not.
The memory of the 2016 presidential campaigns and election includes an appeal by Trump to Russia and its hackers to find and publish compromising information on Hillary Clinton, which they did. Our intelligence agencies and the Mueller Report documented the Russian interference to help Trump win that election.
The evidence in the impeachment documentation is that, as President, he did it again. This time, it was Ukraine and it was not construed so much as an appeal as a demand for assistance in the 2020 election in return for American help and support for its war against Russian invaders.
The Ukraine affair and the impeachment that has resulted is by far the biggest national and international headline of 2019. This, together with Americaís continued alienation from NATO and our European allies in the face of Russian resurgence, the rapid growth of Chinese economic, political and military power, North Koreaís missile tests and Iranís focus on overcoming sanctions provides a sobering challenge to United States influence and strength around the world.
Domestically, Latinos continue to be in the front lines of the Presidentís effort to placate his far-right political base. This base that was created on the back of Latino immigrants is producing White terrorism at an alarming rate.
One of the largest and latest catastrophes in this regard in 2019 was the White supremacist massacre at an El Paso, Texas Walmart. It was a major border incident on the American side that reflects the focus against Latinos and denotes the symbolism associated with the notion of a border wall.
The Trump presidential campaign for the 2020 election has largely concentrated on consolidating and maintaining his base. In the process, the President has taken such complete control of the Republican Party that those that donít always agree with him are either losing primaries or retiring.
By so consolidating his base, President Trump has assured himself of a relatively short distance between where he is now in the polls and reelection. His base and its allies represent 39 to 40 percent of the electorate.
By carefully selecting the battleground states and increasing his standing at election time by 12 percentage points, Trump can very well win reelection. Given the fact that the Democratic Party is fielding a large number of candidates for nomination, it is probable that it will take an extraordinary effort by the eventual nominee to effectively generate the numbers for victory in November 2020.
2020 is expected to be a very exciting time for every kind of political activists. It also represent a major challenge to convince the American people of the best way forward in a time of such uncertainty.