The Formidable Checks and Balances Imposing on President Trump

Donald Trump wanted to start his presidency with the shock and awe of rapid change. Instead, almost everywhere he looks, he’s stuck in the mud of grinding trench warfare.

Trump’s tumultuous first month has been an extended lesson in the limits of a president’s power—as well as the limits of Trump’s own intellectual and emotional ability to operate within those constraints. Whether he can regroup will depend on whether he can find a more effective response to those limits than the rage, bluster, and disdain he’s exhibited so far. …

Amid all these institutional challenges, Trump is also facing a ferociously mobilized domestic opposition marked by the largest protests and highest disapproval ratings confronting any newly elected president. It took nearly 600 days for Obama’s disapproval rating to reach even 50 percent in Gallup polling; Trump hit 55 percent disapproval in 23 days, far faster than any predecessor. CONT.

Ronald Brownstein, The Atlantic