Trump 2020: Protest President in Polarized Country

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2020-64-10-17-28
V. Zhuravleva (,
Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO), 23, Profsoyuznaya Str., Moscow, 117997, Russian Federation

Abstract. On November 3, 2020, the experiment started with the election of 2016, which brought the alien to the White House, will end. D. Trump’s nonconformism, political incorrectness, his playing out of the rules mirror a highly polarized process of the last decades. All four years of his Presidency, the ideologically divided political system has been trying to push this alien out not letting him make any radical changes. Trump survived, as well as the system. He followed Obama: in a polarized environment, he succeeded only with one element of his ambitious agenda – the tax reform, all the rest of his presidency he spent in battles. Democrats in Congress and on the streets are mad and angry about Trump as much as Republicans disliked Obama: during the four years, his approval rate among them was moving between 3% and 8%; in Congress, Democrats blocked all his initiatives and spent their time in principal but hopeless and useless try to impeach him. The federal government stopped functioning as one mechanism: Congress has been focusing on investigations, while the President has been changing personalities in his Administration and baking executive orders trying to cope with his agenda. The society has been boiling over on partisan line: Democrats alike their congressmen have been dreaming to kick out the alien President from the White House, while Republicans were stable in their loyalty to their President: 86% have supported him in all the ups and downs of his war with the Congress, Washington bureaucracy, media and liberals. In four years, it became obvious that the divided society being even more polarized now than in 2016 is starving for changes while the divided establishment is blocked in ideological radicalization unable to reach a compromise needed to respond to society. Whoever wins on November 3, Trump will stay in history not as an outsider, but as one more leader trapped in polarization that mirrored and fortified the ideological divide. The loop of the polarization brings the leaders to the political stage, who, being the face of the protest, are unable to challenge it with all their ambitious agendas drown in polarized Washington. Still the charge of the protest that they bring to the system speed up the transformation.

Keywords: 2020 election, loop of polarization, ideological split of society and authority, polarization of political process, liberals, conservatives, social protest, bipartisanship, negative choice, transformation of system, social state


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For citation:
Zhuravleva V. Trump 2020: Protest President in Polarized Country. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2020, vol. 64, no. 10, pp. 17-28.

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