We are past the halfway mark of the year, which in political speak means we have four months until the midterm election and only five months in the remainder of this Congress – possibly the last fully controlled by Democrats during President Biden’s first term in office.
After World War II, Winston Churchill proclaimed, “Never a let a good crisis go to waste.” Many politicians in the U.S. adopted some form of that statement and even more regularly employ this practice to promote their own agendas.
Now fully six months into his term in office, President Biden has made little actual change to many of the trade policies implemented by the previous administration that are still in place today. This leaves manufacturers wondering how to manage their supply chains in the coming months, what to anticipate from overseas import competition and whether to expect a new direction from this White House.
If an American president signs a climate-change agreement, and everyone is around to see it, does it really make a difference? With an election every four years, the answer is not on the international stage.
After each election, lobbyists in Washington, D.C., like myself, work with clients to plan their legislative and regulatory agendas based on the outcomes in November. This year, not only did we have to await the results of two Senate runoff elections in Georgia, but the winners on January 5 realigned power in Washington and with it upended the agendas of businesses across the country.
Things are coming together, as they say. This column was published around Election Day 2020 and completes 48 consecutive years of my writing it. Over this time, seven out of 10 reader responses have been kind and positive.
I often say my lifelong job has been to “watch government(s) and report how they screw things up.” Abraham Lincoln said, “We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the Courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the men who would pervert the Constitution.”
My family settled in “the valley” (Shenandoah) in the 1640s. Later, the “war” devastated the entire area, to the extent that it took 90 years (1960) for the local population in northern Virginia to return to pre-war levels.