Marc A. Thiessen
Barring some miraculous breakthrough, on Saturday, the government shutdown was to become the longest in American history. But it already had hit an historic milestone: It was already, far and away, the stupidest government shutdown in American history.
President Donald Trump did something Tuesday night that he has rarely done since taking office: He used the presidential bully pulpit to reach beyond his hardcore base of supporters to make his case to the American people as a whole.
In his second year in office, President Donald Trump did many positive things. But he also did a lot of bad things that ranged from cringeworthy to catastrophic. Here are Trump's five best moments of 2018, followed by his five worst: The best:
President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw all U.S. forces from Syria is already having unintended consequences. The U.S. departure could lead to the release of 1,100 Islamic State fighters now held in detention camps in northeastern Syria — creating a dangerous new terrorist threat to the West.
All of Washington is focused on the political peril President Donald Trump faces from Robert Mueller's investigation. But the Mueller probe could very well turn out to be a disaster, not for Trump, but for the Democrats.
Good news for the incoming House Democratic majority. They have something President Donald Trump really, really wants: money to build a border wall. Trump is desperate for this money. Mexico won't give it to him. Only congressional Democrats can. Without their consent, he can't deliver on one of the key campaign promises he made during the 2016 election.
"When you strike at a king you must kill him," Ralph Waldo Emerson once said. Well, this year China tried to strike at President Donald Trump for daring to launch a trade war with Beijing — and missed the mark entirely.
A Chinese scientist's claim to have created the first genetically edited babies has evoked widespread condemnation from the scientific community. "This is far too premature," one American genetic scientist told the Associated Press. But here is a larger question: Should we be doing this at all?
By Thursday, Republican Gov. Rick Scott led Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson by 12,562 votes in the Florida Senate race. A margin of victory that large has never be overturned in a recount. According to FairVote, the average vote shift in statewide general election recounts is a meager 282 votes. "The biggest swing came in Florida's 2000 presidential election recount, when Al Gore cut 1,247 votes off George W. Bush's lead, ultimately not enough to flip the state to his column," according to a FiveThirtyEight report on what FairVote found.
When the president announced he was sending the U.S. military to help secure our southern border, he received bipartisan praise from members of Congress. The Washington Post reported that the move was seen as "smart politics." The year was 2011, and the president was Barack Obama. The National Guard troops Obama sent to the border as part of "Operation Phalanx" helped apprehend nearly 18,000 illegal immigrants and seized more than 56,000 pounds of illegal drugs.