Hillary Clinton, if she wins, can expect what may be the most pointed congressional oversight investigations to greet an incoming president. She’d also need to grapple with health insurance costs, foreign entanglements and domestic divisions.
Donald Trump, if he wins, will face instant pressure to dispel the credibility problems that go with his sky-high promises to build that border wall, restore factory jobs, crush the Islamic State group and replace Obamacare while reducing taxes.
Whoever emerges on top, the next presidency threatens to become an object lesson for the saying “Be careful what you wish for.” The minefields are vast.
Even before Friday’s thunderbolt e-mail revelations by FBI Director James Comey, the House’s GOP majority already was poised to launch and resume probes of all things Clinton.
“It’s a target-rich environment,” House Oversight Committee chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) said earlier last week. “Even before we get to Day One, we’ve got two years’ worth of material already lined up. She has four years of history at the State Department, and it ain’t good.”
Clinton would face demands from her left, which she sought to soothe after the primary without entirely trashing the Wall Street bigs among her allies. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders would try to push her administration on several issues.
Should Trump take office Jan. 20, questions will linger about his character, his business interests, his personal behavior and his view of executive power, his alienation from Republicans and the alarms he raised among Democrats. Trump also might move to oust Rep. Paul Ryan as his party’s House speaker.
The president elected next week faces a “harder deal” than his or her predecessors for several reasons, said New York political consultant Henry Sheinkopf.
“The entire population is undergoing shifts,” he said. These involve immigration, income inequality, the influx of wealthier citizens to cities and the squeeze on blue-collar families.
Expectations may exceed any president’s ability to meet them.
One commentator even argued in The Hill that if she wins, Clinton “should serve one term, step aside à la LBJ, and turn over the leadership of her party to a new generation in 2020.
“It’s the best thing for her and the country,” opined Jonathan Walczak.
Transition teams for prospective presidents always begin before Election Day. Last week Reuters reported that Trump’s transition team was asked to scale back its work — which Trump team official Bill Palatucci denied.
Clinton has been reported close to deciding who her top West Wing advisers would be.