What a difference a few days can make. On the eve of Election Day 2016, the pollsters and pundits gave GOP “outsider” Donald J. Trump two chances to win the White House: slim and none.
Early on election night, the Clinton camp was so cocksure of Hillary’s coming coronation, they were popping champagne corks and congratulating themselves on “thumping” Trump and regaining control of the Senate.
Much to their chagrin, Trump “trumped” them all in the only polls that really counted -- the electoral votes in 30 key states, including Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Ironically for them, poetically for him, it was “true blue” Wisconsin that took him over the 270 electoral votes needed to clinch his historic victory.
Now the Trump team is in transition and the Democrats are in disarray. Despite dark warnings and hints from the mainstream media about “turmoil in Trumptown,” President-elect Donald Trump is taking his time on tapping the talent for his team that will help him spring into action on Jan. 20, 2017, complete with GOP control of the Senate and House of Representatives.
In my view, Trump wisely chose Republican National Committee Chair Reince Priebus to be his White House Chief of Staff. Then he named Vice President-elect Mike Pence to run the transition team, replacing N.J. Gov. Chris Christie.
As of this writing, Trump continues to vet, interview, and audition a galaxy of GOP stars for key cabinet members and other positions of high responsibility in his administration. Predictably, he is also suffering the slings and arrows of criticism from his detractors, who assert he is “taking too much time.”
Actually, the Trump transition team’s timeline compares favorably with, or better than, previous teams, including those of President Barack Obama and former presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Even George the Elder Bush and Ronald Reagan took their time in that pivotal process of preparing to govern the nation.
What was good for previous presidents, Democrat and Republican, should be good for President-elect Donald J. Trump, too. After all, he, and we, will have to live with the choices he makes. For they will help him find the focus and determine the direction he will take our nation during his presidency.
By the way, the choices now under consideration by Trump are merely the “tip of the iceberg.” Some 4,000 plus positions will also have to be filled in the near future, including a Supreme Court justice nominee, and many other federal judicial officials.
Finally, for those, including Hillary Clinton, who continue to insist she “won” the popular vote, they would do well take her loss like Andrew Jackson did in 1824, Samuel J. Tilden did in 1876, Grover Cleveland did in 1888, and Al Gore did in 2000.
Retired Army Col. Thomas B. Vaughn can be reached at email@example.com.