The one way Donald Trump might be like George H.W. Bush

It is all too easy to talk about Bush’s passing as the end of a bygone era. Hopefully, however, there is one way that Bush and Trump will be similar: They will both be one-term presidents.

The effect of Bush’s 1992 loss on the current GOP cannot be overestimated. The object lesson for the GOP was that neither preparation nor accomplishment mattered as a metric for political success. The two salient facts for Republicans were: (1) Bush compromised with Democrats to reduce the budget deficit, thereby reversing his pledge not to raise taxes and alienating the GOP base; and (2) Bush lost in 1992. Newt Gingrich supplanted Bush as the GOP standard-bearer. This paved the way for political success and policy disasters.

Donald Trump can do one useful thing for the modern GOP: He can lose in 2020.