For every day that’s gone by with Donald Trump in the Oval Office, it seems like another high-profile Democrat stands up to his regressive and non sanctionable policies. For anyone who’s been watching Trump’s childish antics and blustering responses to criticisms throughout the campaign season, it likely comes as no surprise that the President has responded without any regard for the consequences of his actions. Instead of working towards compromise and bipartisanship, Trump prefers to simply rant about his political opponents on Twitter and hand out punishments for disagreeing with him.
The most recent target of Trump’s juvenile style of governing is not an individual, but an entire state. After multiple cities in the state of California committed to fighting Trump’s attempts to deport undocumented immigrants, the California State Senate decided to take it one step further and label the entire state a “Sanctuary State”.
This would allow California’s state government to invoke the United States Constitution in order to prevent federal executive order actions concerning immigration and deportation from taking place in the state. Obviously, this was meant to send a powerful message to Donald Trump: his attempts to undermine the spirit of American inclusiveness aren’t welcome in the state of California.
In typical Trump fashion, he responded on Twitter, immediately threatening to stop the flow of federal funding into California. Overall, California is one of the states that would be least hurt by a halting of federal funding, as the state receives a -28% return on investment for each dollar it invests in federal government programs.
It also maintains an economy that employs millions of Americans and generates the world’s sixth largest GDP. Clearly, the state is an economic powerhouse, and it’s likely that lawmakers there could resist Trump’s attempts to bully them into compliance by withholding federal funds.
The troubling aspect of this situation, however, isn’t any imminent danger to the state as a whole, but rather the state’s world-renowned public University of California system. As usual, Trump fails to understand the consequences of his actions: by cutting federal funding to the state, Trump will do little to hurt the lawmakers that oppose him.
Instead, he will be undermining the cornerstone vehicle of social mobility that is the public university system, as University of California schools are dependent on $9,000,000,000 in annual federal research funds.
If Trump cuts this funding, he’ll slow down scientific research and cut scholarship funding, which will in turn dissuade students from attending public universities and thus further contribute to the shortage of skilled labor in this country.
If Trump actually cares about American jobs and American success on the international playing field, he should be building up our domestic education, not tearing it down. Once again, however, his temper has gotten the better of him, and it’s up to the Democratic lawmakers in California to show him just how effective resistance to his policies can be.
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