John O’Connor

It appears even President Trump realizes the election is over. So barring a spectacularly unexpected twist between now and Jan. 20, Joe Biden will soon be back in the White House.

The 2020 presidential campaign was hard fought, personal and nasty. Feelings remain bruised on both sides. I have friends and relatives still debating the respective failings of the other side’s candidate.

Having been repeatedly disappointed by elected politicians throughout my adult life, I didn’t have strong feelings about the outcome here. But I must admit I am going to miss Donald Trump being our president.

As for why, my sentiment has nothing to do with how well he performed his duties, or whether the next guy might be worse. Simply put, Trump always found a way to make me smile.

Sometimes the comedy was intentional. More often, it was not. Regardless, Trump will surely be remembered as the most humor-inducing commander in chief our nation has ever had. Let’s not forget, this is the person who:

•  Gave out Sen. Lindsey Graham’s (R-SC) cell phone number in a moment of pique.

•  Said, “I love words. I have the best words.”

•  Introduced the word “schlonged” to campaign coverage.

•  Said of Arianna Huffington: “I fully understand why her former husband left her for a man — he made a good decision.”

And how can we ever forget his suggestion for curing COVID-19: disinfectant and ultraviolet light. 

How funny is he? Late show comedians now routinely devote their entire monologues to things Trump.

Of course, long-term care operators might have more serious reasons to feel bad about the election’s outcome.

Let’s not forget that prior to his first campaign, Trump repeatedly promised to cut red tape. And he delivered.

During his watch, non-pandemic rules from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services slowed to a trickle. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued nary a warning or citation.  As for the National Labor Relations Board? It hasn’t heard an argument from big business it didn’t like in years.

You can be sure that under the next administration, this laissez-faire approach will change — and change dramatically. More rules and regulations are coming. And the referees are not going to keep swallowing their whistles. I’m not making these predictions to blast Biden. I’m merely pointing out what is surely going to happen.

So thank you President Trump for making us laugh. The years ahead might not be nearly as funny.

 John O’Connor is Editorial Director for McKnight’s