There’s a scene in the 1972 movie “The Candidate” in which Robert Redford’s character Bill McKay, having just won a Senate seat, sits on the edge of a bed and asks his main handler, “What do we do now?” That’s where the entire country is today—Trump supporters, Clinton supporters and Donald Trump himself. What do we do now, indeed.
After one of the most stunning upsets in American political history, the country seems not to know what happens next. One good thing is we have a peaceful transfer of power (something not assured if the vote went the other way).
Without trying to analyze just how the country came to elect an unhinged egomaniac-misogynist, let’s look at the questions we face:
• What becomes of the millions of immigrants that are in this country illegally? Does Trump make good on his promise to form a “deportation force” to rip families apart who have lived here for decades?
• Will he succeed in banning all Muslims from entering the country?
• What does Japan, Saudi Arabia and South Korea do with a green light to develop nuclear weapons?
• How many more American servicemen will be tasked with “bombing the sh** out of ISIS?
• What type of Supreme Court nominee will Trump choose—one who will roll back rights for the LGBT community including marriage equality?
• Will Trump really appoint a special prosecutor to try to throw Hillary Clinton in jail?
• What about the repeated claims that the election was fixed? Does Trump do his best James Comey impression with a, “Never mind?”
• Where do the likes of Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, Ben Carson, even Chris Christie, et al. fit into a Trump administration?
• Will the financial markets both here and overseas recover the losses they are currently experiencing?
• Do our NATO allies start to panic?
• How far will Trump go in his bromance with Vladimir Putin and Russia? (Russia is cheering the Trump win.)
• Can Trump actually govern with so many members of a Republican Congress on the record as having opposed him, chastised him or otherwise expressed disgust with him?
The most important question is, “Can the country truly come together and unify?” Let’s face it. Trump did not run as a unity candidate. He ran as a Hellfire missile into the political system. Well, that system has been blown to bits.
The country is more polarized than ever before. There is deep-seeded mistrust of the president-elect both internationally and here in this country. With Republicans now controlling the House, Senate and the White House, there is genuine and well-founded concern for the future of this country.
So, what do we do now?