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Op-Ed

Trump Plants a Flag in California and the Left Cries Foul

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Right on cue, the liberal left sang in unison a loud chorus of protest against President Donald Trump’s brief trip to California this week.

In fact, it seemed as if both Gov. Gavin Newsom and Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles would have prevented Air Force One from landing anywhere in the Golden State if they could have done so.

But they couldn’t, so Trump landed, planted a flag of principle, and lingered just long enough to show his sputtering critics that they can’t intimidate him.

The Democrats hold a supermajority in the Sacramento legislature, and in 2016 the state was decidedly deep blue in casting its electoral votes for Hillary Clinton. In a state that is so far to the left both geographically and politically, what could the California Democrats possibly have to complain — or worry — about?

Actually, quite a lot.

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California has an interesting voting dynamic that is unique in the nation. Though the other 49 states picture California as one homogeneous voting bloc, in actuality, only 43 percent of the state is registered as Democrats, 33 percent of voters are registered either as Independents or those who “Decline to State” a party affiliation, and 24 percent of the state’s voters are registered as Republicans.

Even though Republicans make up just the third-largest voting bloc in California — the only state in the nation with such a distinction — there are more registered Republicans in California than in any other state where voters register by party.

And yes, even in California, the vast majority of these voters are committed supporters of Donald Trump.

One of the things Democrats here should be concerned about is the fact that 57 percent of Californians decided not to register as Democrats. Does that matter to them? Do they still try to recruit supporters and win elections based on their message and their platform? Or do they just change the rules to better suit them? Increasingly, it’s the latter.

They don’t want Trump on the ballot in 2020 — so they changed the rules to require the release of his tax returns. They don’t want Republicans to have a chance to vote for their own best candidate — so they created a jungle primary which takes the top two candidates, regardless of party. When they don’t agree with federal laws, they just ignore them or have their own liberal judges issue injunctions to keep them from being enforced.

The irony is, if the Democrats truly cared about all the issues they claim to care about, then Trump in many ways should be their hero, not their villain. Let me explain.

Democrats often claim to be for the underdogs, the forgotten, and the underrepresented. Therefore, they should be celebrating the all-time low unemployment rates in the African-American, Hispanic-American, and Asian-American communities, and cheering for similarly record-breaking unemployment rates among women, veterans, millennials, and even the disabled.

In fact, wages have risen for workers across every sector, which should be cause for Democratic applause, not angry protest. On the left, though, politics apparently trumps progress, even in the policy areas they claim to care about most.

Let’s look at the homelessness crisis in California — a problem that has grown dangerously out of control in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, and other cities statewide. Regardless of how much money is thrown at the problem, and in spite of how many times public officials say they are concerned about it and want to fix it, the problem continues to get worse.

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Trump recently sent a task force team out to California to evaluate the crisis and see what the federal government could do to assist. Rather than welcoming this support and willingness to bring attention and resources to the problem, local politicians told the president, in essence, that homelessness is a state and local problem to resolve, and that he should stay out of it.

Clearly, the goal isn’t to solve the problem, otherwise they would welcome assistance, regardless of its origin. I wonder if people on those streets would care who provided them with a hot meal or warm bed? I doubt it.

Illegal immigration is another hot topic here in California. Trump didn’t shy away from it, but went straight to the border to see for himself some of the newly-built sections of wall. I think Democrats in California would be shocked to know that the president is polling at 50 percent support among Hispanic-American voters.

Perhaps the liberal narrative of racism is ill-placed since even these voters favor legal immigration, but decidedly reject illegal immigration, even from Mexico. Hispanic Americans constitute a large and growing share of the electorate, and the fact that this important voting bloc doesn’t fit within the narrative of how the mainstream media portray the president’s supporters will be extremely significant in 2020.

And how do the wealthiest Californians — such as celebrities and the Hollywood elite — justify watching their stock portfolios grow, their bank accounts increase, and their businesses expand under Trump, yet continuously reject the very policies that enabled that wealth creation? Between tax cuts and deregulation, many of them have profited greatly from Trump’s agenda, yet they continue to bite the hand that feeds them. Do they really want to start paying a 90 percent tax rate, which some candidates in their own party are threatening to impose upon them?

And who can forget about the historic criminal justice reforms that the left has been talking about for decades, yet only came about as a result of Trump’s momentous endorsement of the First Step Act?

And how do California’s environmentalists ignore the Save Our Seas act that this president signed, which pledges to remove tons of plastic and trash from the ocean?

What about the Music Copyright Law, which helps artists protect the rights to their own music?

Both issues are near and dear to the hearts of Hollywood liberals, and they should be thanking him, not trying to throw him out of the state.

Liberals routinely mock Trump as a buffoon, dismiss his election victory as illegitimate, and grossly misrepresent the things he says, yet Trump has actually accomplished more of the left’s professed policy goals in less than one full term than Democrats accomplished in eight whole years under Obama. While they continue to talk about it, he continues to get it done.

Before the president left the Golden State, he also accomplished three other things of note:

  1. He succeeded in thoroughly annoying the left just by his mere presence in the state
  2. The Trump 2020 campaign raised $15 million, money that has now left the state to support his re-election bid.
  3. President Trump picked up California resident, Rob O’Brien, and flew him back to D.C. on Air Force One to appoint him as the new national security advisor. A great loss for California and a tremendous gain for the president and our nation.

All in all, it was an immensely successful trip for President Trump, who planted a flag in California soil and vowed to help a state in need — even a state that has overwhelmingly rejected him.

So who exactly is more tolerant and more committed to solutions for the Golden State? It turns out that it’s not the Democrats in Sacramento, but President Donald Trump.

The views expressed in this opinion article are those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by the owners of this website. If you are interested in contributing an Op-Ed to The Western Journal, you can learn about our submission guidelines and process here.

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Peggy Grande is a California native, the chair of World for Brexit and author of “The President Will See You Now: My Stories and Lessons from Ronald Reagan’s Final Years.” She was the executive assistant to President Ronald Reagan from 1989-1999. Follow her on Twitter @peggy_grande.




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