What Trump and congressional Republicans could learn from college football
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College football is about to start. That means millions of fans across the country are scoping out their favorite team’s schedule. In doing so, they’re imagining what it would be like to win the big games on that schedule.

The thought process goes something like this: “We could win this game, and we’ll definitely beat them. We’d have to steal a tough one on the road there, and if we’re undefeated by the time we get to November, we could run the table.” The optimism and anticipation of fans this time of year is palpable.

Let’s follow their lead and imagine what it would be like if our political leaders went undefeated this fall.


Season opener: We move past the focus on Antifa and the alt-right, and put Charlottesville behind us. We’d be celebrating the things that make America great, such as our respect for one another and the opportunities our liberty provides each one of us. 1-0


Game 2: Repeal and replace ObamaCare. We drive premiums down, deregulate, and open up competition across the marketplace. As consumers, we have more choices that are more affordable. 2-0.

Game 3: Tax reform. We cut taxes for families and business and unlock explosive economic growth. Entrepreneurism and innovation are higher than ever, and family income goes further, allowing Americans to save or make important investments in their future. 3-0.

Game 4: Our resolve and strategic defense is insurmountable, and North Korea is deterred from foolishly attacking the U.S. or our allies. 4-0.

Games 5: Our success against ISIS in Syria and Iraq continues until they are completely destroyed. 5-0. 

Game 6: The troop increase in Afghanistan serves to “kill terrorists,” as it’s intended, and we prevent the Taliban from retaking any of their influence in the region. 6-0.

Game 7: We properly increase the defense budget while prioritizing and reducing the rest of federal discretionary spending. We’re on a path to a balanced budget. 7-0.

Game 8: The debt ceiling is lifted alongside serious spending reforms such as discretionary caps, a Swiss-style debt brake, and responsible cuts to mandatory spending programs. 8-0.

Game 9: We secure our national border, and curtail illegal immigration. Sanctuary policies are eliminated, our country is safer, and the rule of law is intact. 9-0.

Game 10: Originalists who believe in the Constitution and won’t abuse their power as judges are nominated and confirmed to fill empty sets across the federal judiciary. 10-0.

Game 11: The REINS Act is enacted, and Congress has the power to eliminate the administrative state, and unleash American businesses from the chains of regulations. 11-0.

None of the things by themselves are that hard to imagine. This slate of accomplishments is well within the grasp of President Trump and Republican leaders in Congress. This fall, these things could really happen.

In Washington, optimism is often scorned and dismissed. Too often, politicians lower expectations to make them easier to meet. Like college football fans everywhere, let’s raise our expectations, and cheer our hearts out for our leaders to meet them.

Thomas Binion is the director of Congressional and Executive Branch Relations at The Heritage Foundation.

The views expressed by contributors are their own and are not the views of The Hill.