The Midterm-Year Whirlwind

Prediction: A major Trump success in Korea and in the midterms

by Conrad Black

The thrusting green shoots of early spring and visions of cotton-tailed rabbits confounding my wife’s splendid Hungarian dogs by their acrobatic zig-zag jumping have incited me to make some predictions about this midterm-election year. Congress has given notice that it has effectively shut down, having passed its egregious omnibus-spending bill, as Schumer and Pelosi welcomed McConnell and Ryan back to the pre-Trump days of Congress’s just rolling the pork barrel around with no serious guidance from the White House and unfazed by overwhelming disapproval ratings in the polls.

Eighty-five percent of Americans are currently contemptuous of the Congress, but they are not so angry as to become revolutionary about it, so the legislators, almost all of whom were subjected to withering ridicule by candidate Trump, are radically divided. The House Democrats would impeach the president, for no cause, but for the fun of it and to immobilize him while the infantile nonsense of a Senate trial failed to remove him. This is the Maxine Waters/Jerrold Nadler/Red Queen Law School. The Republicans would spare the president, the country, and the world that indignity, but lack the energy or imagination to do anything about health care, immigration, infrastructure, welfare reform, the deficit, or anything else of any significance. The Congress claims to have just 75 work days left before the November elections, and the Senate, strangled by Democratic intransigence, will do brilliantly by its recent standards if it confirms the nominees to the present cabinet vacancies (State, Veterans Affairs, CIA). The many vacant embassies and judgeships will have to wait, for the voters.

Trump’s assault on the entire political class has won him the White House, and brought over most of the Republican senators and congressmen to support of his program, if not with the energy or motivation that might quicken the molasses pace of the flow of work in Washington. And the president is slowly climbing in the polls, as prosperity rises steadily. The total-immersion smear campaign of the Democratic party and the media is reduced to demented repetition (Adam Schiff, the legislative voice of the intellectual abyss of Hollywood), Carl Bernstein’s constitutional-crisis tour (now in its 45th year), and the theories that Trump’s lawyer’s paying Stormy Daniels $130,000 constituted an illegal campaign contribution (to Trump) or that firing James Comey for obvious cause might be a triable case of obstruction of justice.

Before we get to the first week in November, I think approximately the following events will occur. There will be a four-power agreement between the two Koreas, China, and the United States that the Korean peninsula will, as verified by believably rigorous inspection, be denuclearized and it will be agreed that the Peninsula will be reunified only by spontaneous consent between the two Koreas without outside influence. Kim Jong Un can claim this is a victory of legitimization, but the removal of the North Korean nuclear threat will be a clear victory for President Trump also. If the talks with North Korea do not produce such an outcome, the administration will achieve the denuclearization by direct air attacks at minimum cost in lives and without a land war, yielding no concessions at all to the North, so the agreement described is likely.

Hysteria about trade wars will settle down and it will become clear that the administration is negotiating toward trade arrangements that do not yield such lopsided deficits for the United States as do the present arrangements with China, Japan, and Mexico. Everyone will see that the Russian-collusion argument, which was the Holy Grail of the Democratic party and the media for 18 months, is a gigantic canard. In fact, as any historically informed person would agree after two seconds’ reflection, no one ever nominated by a major party to the presidency of the United States would have entertained for an instant colluding with a foreign power to rig or influence an American presidential election. It is too outlandish a suggestion to be taken seriously, or even made the stuff of a novel. The attempts to present Donald Trump as a Manchurian Candidate, “groomed for the presidency by the Russians” (as the DNC-funded Steele dossier claimed), and promoted by $1 million a month on Facebook (most of which went to decry the condition of the country with nonpartisan impartiality, or to promote Bernie Sanders or the Greens), is a descent to the ahistorical, inconceivable nether region of outright madness.

This was a campaign in which Mrs. Clinton smashed all records by spending $250 million in attack ads — “advertisements of no policy content,” as they are officially classified. She outspent Trump almost two to one overall, in a campaign where the two candidates splashed out almost $2.5 billion. The main Russian component was the Democratic National Committee’s commitment of over $10 million for the Steele dossier, replete with scatological and salacious trimmings for the delectation of the FBI, which made it the core of illegal acts of surveillance and harassment by one party against another through a suborned and corrupted legal system.

We must be close to the point where Robert Mueller has to decide whether he is going to acknowledge that the cause for which his special-counsel investigation of Russian involvement in the 2016 election was set up — after the illegal leaking of a contested account of a conversation with the president by James Comey immediately after he was fired as director of the FBI — has been thoroughly plumbed and has yielded interesting information about Russian endeavors but no evidence whatever of any collusion with any substantial American political party. There obviously is no such evidence, despite 18 months of tearing everything apart, and shock-and-awe prosecutions of peripheral people for unconnected alleged offenses, all by a rabidly partisan Trump-hating gang of partially lawless vigilantes recruited by Mueller for the task. If he can’t face such an honorable but unsensational dénouement, Mueller can wander around a while longer in Trump’s doubtless complicated finances, but with no visible hope of connecting anything Trump received with political improprieties. He can take a step toward making respectable what is now a warlock-hunt of the oppressive special-counsel system, or “fade away” like General MacArthur’s “Old Soldier” as he sifts irrelevancies from the past in unpublicized futility, another redundancy in the vast Washington wasteland of dispensable people and activities, a trivia question and “whatever happened to” subject.

Whatever Mueller does, he will be overshadowed by the long-delayed blow-up of the nuclear grenade of Democratic skullduggery: the complicity of senior officials of the Obama administration, including the former president himself and his attorney general and deputy attorney general (Loretta Lynch and Sally Yates), in false or negligently incomplete information securing an illegal Foreign Intelligence Surveillance warrant against the innocuous Carter Page, deliberately mishandling and misstating the Clinton email abuse, and slipshod handling, including by then–FBI director Mueller and then U.S. attorney Rosenstein, of the Uranium One controversy. It will start to explode with the inspector general’s report on the FBI, and will eventually expose the most outrageous political dirty trick (Steele dossier) and greatest scandal (politicization of the federal justice system) in U.S. history. The much-denigrated J. Edgar Hoover, in 48 years at the head of the federal police, never intervened in a presidential election or gave any hint of partisanship. Watergate was a forced entry of which the president had no knowledge, which resulted in no theft or property damage.

Trump will run on prosperity, Democratic corruption, the Korean settlement, and immigration — especially the Democrats’ ambition to flood the country with illegal welfare cases and perpetuate their incumbency with the bought votes of unskilled foreigners, while preventing the census from accurately attributing congressional districts and Electoral College votes and while conspiring with mayors  (including in New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago) to violate federal immigration laws. He will promote deportation of the 3 million convicted lawbreakers among them and naturalization of the rest including the DACA people and Dreamers, and the adoption of merit-based immigration as in most advanced countries, such as Canada and Australia.

My prediction is that the Republicans will gain six or seven senators and retain control of the House of Representatives.

So dependent have the Democrats become on these illegal-migrant votes, they have no apparent notion of their political vulnerability. My prediction is that the president will conduct an unprecedentedly strenuous midterm campaign, the Republicans will gain six or seven senators and retain control of the House of Representatives, a number of the prominent Democrats mentioned above will be indicted, and the congressional Republicans, with refreshed leadership, will be energized to deal with the president’s program. The Democrats have sown, and Donald Trump shall reap.

First published in National Review Online.


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