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Setback for Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump’s first anniversary of his very dramatic victory last year was marked by major reverses. The changes in his cabinet have already undermined his political stature. Though he claims that the US economy is on a sound footing, the business honchos in the US are mostly against him. The recent election results have been an acid test for his electoral charisma. The latest debacle was in Virginia’s gubernatorial contest. Recently Trump had sullied his image in Charlottesville, Virginia. Lieutenant Governor Ralph Northam, a Democrat trounced his rival Republican governor Ed Gillespie. In New Jersey, Democrat Phil Murphy reclaimed the governorship with a victory of several percentage points ousting his rival, Republican governor Chris Christie who had been in power for 8 years. Christie was once a stout ally of Donald Trump. In New York, progressive Mayor Bill de Blasio rode a wave of distaste for Trumpism, to victory.

Does all this signify a revival of political fortunes for the Democratic Party which had been in decline for some time? It has been said that the recent election results are a referendum on American values. Gillespie’s victory would have validated Trump’s aggressive style of running the presidency. Following Gillespie’s defeat, Trump has promptly distanced himself from his candidate. Virginia was a blood bath for Republicans. Gillespie aired ads that fuelled a debate on race, guns, illegal immigrants and the fate of Confederate statutes. It is difficult to win without Trump, difficult to fight with him. Republicans had suffered a defeat in the recent past on Obamacare legislation in Congress. 

 

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