Published online by Cambridge University Press: 07 July 2020
Donald Trump appeared to turn American politics upside down in his 2016 presidential election campaign. He accomplished this feat by embracing issues that have long been at the core of Republican Party platforms and combining them with positions that appealed to socially, economically, and politically disaffected white voters. In addition to advocating a pro-life agenda, he reached out to traditional Republican constituencies in a range of important ways, embracing tax reform and tax cuts as well as promising major rollbacks of Obama-era regulatory regimes that were aimed at reversing climate change, stimulating economic competition, and stabilizing financial markets. Perhaps most importantly, he promised to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – the most important social welfare legislation adopted since the establishment of Medicare in 1965. All these positions fall in line with Republican orthodoxy regarding small government and unfettered free enterprise.
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