Presidential Campaign

The miracle and meaning of Donald Trump’s victory

Trump supporters at White House
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Whew … so, miracles do still happen. Can you believe it?  America has taken back America, boldly asserting a common right to freedom from federal overreach and from public corruption.

Seems incredible, even now, that this unlikely victory has come to pass, gratifying and humbling. Even in an era of cheap communication, this event – an epic assertion of natural rights, an inflection point for our Nation – defies easy words.

{mosads}America turned out en masse, in an unprecedented and spontaneous show of democratic strength, a tour de force, and the living embodiment of Aaron Copeland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man,” equal measures restraint and emotion, conviction and single-minded motion.

Brave souls said “enough,” and went to polls to perform a simple, but vital civic act. They voted their conscience. Our Founders, to a one, would be proud. Beyond the message sent, Americans truly made their democracy work.

Supporters of individual liberty and public integrity, voting by tens of millions for Donald Trump, spoke clearly and boldly, no well-financed “ground game” needed. Overcoming organized “machine” politics, sidelining paid detractors and distractors, they stood up one-by-one and two-by-two. They turned out and voted with personal courage, often facing private and public recriminations.

With one voice, these energized Americans issued a trumpet call, seeking renewed respect for our Republic’s Founding Principles. They defended tenets in our sacred Bill of Rights – such as the First Amendment’s freedoms of religion, speech, association, and petition for redress of grievance. The Second Amendment’s right to keep and bear arms.

The Fourth Amendment’s right to be secure in persons, homes, papers and effects, and against unwarranted searches and seizures. The Sixth Amendment’s assurances of speedy, fair and non-political trials. The Seventh Amendment’s commitments to rule of law, and fidelity to the rules of common law. The Ninth Amendment’s protection against Federal overreach and preservation of rights “retained by the people.”

The Tenth Amendment’s bold guarantee of rights “reserved to the States respectively, or to the People.” And, the Fourteenth Amendment’s focus on rights, privileges and immunities of “citizens” of the United States, and procedural due process.

But there is more. These American voices got raised in unison for other Founding Principles, including “separation of powers,” a non-unilateral and non-imperial presidency, a consciously limited Federal Government, the powers of Congress to check a runaway Executive, and of a strictly interpretive judiciary to check both Congress and the President.

They said, “enough” to blurring constitutionally directed legal lines, arrogation of power to an Executive bent on rule by executive order, and indifference to time honored procedural practices. They said, in a word, no – no more of this abusive behavior.

On the policy front, these brave Trump voters did the Nation an incalculable service, saving our Supreme Court from ideological swerve, rebuilding the military (especially Navy), reaffirming priority on national security, restoring respect for American and global foreign policy, affirming détente in big power geopolitics (instead of drifting toward war with Russia), producing predictable steps toward economic growth (including lower taxes, fewer regulations, smaller bureaucracy), ending the runaway burden, cost and economic inefficiency of “Obamacare,” honoring again our brave and selfless law enforcement community, and reclaiming for all Americans a love of basic liberty and disaffection for government dictation and control.

Perhaps most of all, the courage shown also illustrates three simple lessons. First, as in other great American moments: where there is a common, coherent, concerted will – there is always a way. Second, we Americans are tolerant of one another, as individuals. We forgive each other our individual foibles, as we know we all have them. But we do not tolerate the idea of a Federal Government that is complicit in knowingly dividing us on ourselves. We do not accept that modern narrative, the primacy of factions over the truth of a common Americanism, common idealism, and a shared hope in a better future, for prosperity.

We do not accept the interpretation of Federal Government as a sovereign force, independent of the American majority, able to use executive power to impose fancy or a faction’s will. We do not accept as the “new normal” a politicized, expansive, corrupt, or intentionally divisive executive branch, nor the abdication of tradition and procedure among the other two branches.

Finally, the miracle of this moment is that no one actually dictated it, bought it, mandated it, organized it with foreign money, or otherwise prevented it from coming to pass. No combination of powerful government, media or party elites blew our little vessel over or out to sea; what we call the common man’s democracy was not thrown off course, sunk by deriding cause or given fatal pause.

Instead, something rather remarkable in our Nation’s history, but not unknown; something hard to find yet resident in our individual character and character of America occurred. “We the People …” stood and spoke, with courage. We spoke with the full expectation – as is our way – that we would be heard, most of all heard by each other. And we listened, most of all to each other. That is the real miracle, that such a thing remains possible in our badly divided world.

We Americans know that history and destiny are inextricably intertwined, and that Providence has given us a new chance for remaking our future. It is all in our own hands, now. Done right, the entire Nation will be the beneficiary of this election victory for Donald Trump.

A re-commitment to Founding Principles will serve each and every American, citizens of every creed, color, age, opinion and definition. Our economy will again roar, that salient sound – of hard workers well rewarded for their innovation and effort – echoing across the world, as it has many times before.

Our newly rediscovered freedom from inordinate Federal overreach will invite initiative, confidence and a confluence in the social order. We will again be one People, “One Nation, under God, indivisible” and jointly aspiring to “liberty and justice for all.”  Because, at the end of this day and all the rest, that is who we are – a special People, special Nation.

We are, one and all, inspired and uplifted by each other, possessed of a rare power that sometimes animates us to reach up and take hold of the impossible, and bring it closer, make it real, hold it dear, and perform great acts of courage. Now is this time we must do that once again, and see in the moment, a miracle – that warrants peace among us. We are a special lot, “We the People …”

Charles was Assistant Secretary of State under Colin Powell, served in the Reagan and Bush 41 White Houses, is a former Naval intelligence Officer and writes regularly on national and legal issues.


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Tags 2016 presidential election Donald Trump Make America Great Again Patriots Republican Party U.S. Constitution United States Washington D.C.
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