In a second Trump term, confrontation with the Chinese Communist Party would sharpen, and possibly increase, as a clear-eyed appraisal of the CCP takes root. Tariffs on our allies that unhinge traditional free-traders should fade, but those ringing China will remain as our Navy’s buildup continues. Our exit from Afghanistan will be completed and our footprint in Iraq reduced. The peace accord between the United Arab Emirates and Israel is the first fruit of Trump’s peace plan for the region; the deal itself was birthed from the regional yawn that followed after Trump moved the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.
Trump himself may or may not relax in a second term. The FBI machinations against Trump — though limited to a handful of actors — and the absurdity of the Mueller investigation and impeachment proceedings have become clear. Notice how little time the Democrats spent on these last week? The virus will recede, driven back by new therapies if not a vaccine. The regard most Americans have for themselves and others will end politicization of the pandemic. No matter who wins in November, schools will reopen and commerce (except for that which has permanently migrated online) will return to the streets. The astonishing pace of housing starts in July is a critical revealing detail. The “pent-up” demand the president predicted in the spring has arrived, just like the expected V-shaped rebound in the markets. Employment is returning. We have to plan for the next virus outbreak; others are certain to follow. If Trump closes the borders again, no one will call him xenophobic.
When the border wall is complete, perhaps even sooner, regularization not just of “dreamers” but of all nonviolent immigrants in the country can proceed. Trump has been ready to strike that deal for four years. Manufacturing incentives are poised to draw factories back to the heartland, and Big Tech will find it necessary to invest in America, not faraway countries.