It looks like president-elect Trump won’t be able to keep a number of his key promises. As some are calling him a deceiver, others are calling him a negotiator.
Trump has after getting elected seemingly backed off three significant promises he made during his campaign. He appears to be open to compromise on Obamacare, he will most likely not prosecute Hillary Clinton, and the wall against Mexico seems to become mostly a fence. John Forhan, Professor in Political Science and Former Social Justice Lawyer, is not surprised, and means that this is not typical for Trump.
“It tends to be a thing that politicians do, regardless of party. They tend to make promises that they can’t keep, knowing that they probably can’t keep them,” he says.
Forhan doesn’t believe that breaking these promises will lead to a heavy decrease in support. An anonymous Trump supporter, interviewed for this article, hasn’t stopped supporting Trump as a consequence.
“In order to win this election, Trump had to bring together the far right and the conservative base, and also bring in some democrats. That’s what he did. And he hasn’t broken a single campaign promise yet. Not that I can see, I’m seeing negotiation,” he argues.
While these potentially broken promises could be looked upon as a form of negotiation, Trump now seems to be involved in something that might be harder to defend. He promised that “our movement is about replacing a failed and corrupt establishment with a new government controlled by you, the American people.” During the last couple of weeks, he has nominated Washington politicians such as Elaine Chao and Tom Price for minister posts. Some of his supporters are therefore worried.
“That’s probably the one concern that I have. He talked about draining the swamp and really getting rid of the establishment,” the anonymous Trump supporter says.
According to Forhan, this is a tactical move. “[Trump] wants to appear professional…and he doesn’t want the country as a whole to look at his government as a renegade government,” he says.
Donald Trump won’t be able to keep all of his promises. That’s a reality most politicians have to live with. However, if he gets too cozy with the establishment, it could become a major problem for him.