The Dangers of a One-Term President

Sticks and stones will break bones, but calling names won't hurt, unless it's President Trump does it to the media, because they're very sensitive (wimpy) you see.

I don’t write to criticize or support President Donald Trump. But someone should point out the dangers of a one-term president since they’re not being discussed.

If you’re familiar with Pitch, or high-low-jack as it’s sometimes called, than you know that a “2” bid is much safer than a “4” bid. So for the sake of argument let’s call the 2-bid a two-term presidency and the 4-bid a 4-year-sprint-to-the-end of a single term.

When you bid 2 you’re playing it safe. You don’t want to get knocked out of the game…’re in it for the long run.

The same can be said with a presidency.

After a candidate becomes a president, they spend their first year or so finding their footing. Then they place their bid.

It can take years to bring an idea to fruition. So as the president so you have to plan ahead.

A president that is met with immediate hostility and uncertainty is almost certain to make it a 4 bid–since he knows he’s probably stuck being a one-termer.

They’re crunched for time. They have to move fast.

Obama’s Method

Executive Orders can speed things up, but the more walls a president is initially met with the more they shy away from that 2 bid. The reality that they’re only going to have four years sets in.

Obama took the throne with a chip on his shoulder and a serious cross to bear being the first African-American President. Initially, he moved slowly.

When he was met with resistance, he took a step back. He placed his 2 bid and kept his head down. He didn’t force issues or shock the nation with borderline insane comments. His 2 bid paid off and he covered it by winning a second election.

Presidents in their second term are on a mission to address unresolved issues before their terms end. They have proven to both themselves and history that they were a good president to the American people…at least enough to be elected twice.

That level of respect lowers resistance. Drastic measures and impeachment are generally not on the tips of the nation’s tongue. By the fifth and sixth year in office the president has learned how to keep those wheels turning and keep the country moving forward.

That Risky 4 Bid

After the first year Trump’s been through, it’s safe to say he’s making that risky 4 bid.

There’s been executive orders galore. There’s stone walls stonewalling everything–from his healthcare reform to the actual stone wall he wants to build on the Mexican border.

Trump’s agenda doesn’t make him dangerous. It’s the fact that he’s tried, and failed so many times to accomplish anything. Through in some questions about his character, and we’ve got a combustible situation.

Left. Right. Dead center. None of that matters.

It’s what happens after the bid is placed that will matter. Trump will go long.

Otherwise you can expect volatility in all financial markets and that will make his presidency extremely relevant to everyone.

The reason is pretty simple.

When a president is fighting for approval ratings and reelection, their focus is on how their actions are perceived.

When All is Lost

But once re-election is out of the picture and public approval is irrelevant, the gloves are off. If you can’t go down in the history books as a great American presidents, you might as well line your pockets and those of your friends.

If that happens and Trump loses hope, things will get progressively worse in his 3rd and 4th year.

That’s why every financial analyst worth their salt is predicting another mini recession in 2020.

They might as well name it the Trump Crash now and start preparing.

It usually doesn’t  really matter who the president is to an average American citizen, until it does. By that time, it’s too late.

Our election process, the bipartisan funnel, and the archaic dichotomies that rule out political structure in Washington, can only have two possible outcomes–success or failure.

There are only be two types of ‘Agents of Change’ in politics, the intentional and the unintentional. Intentional change is planned out hard fought and earned by using the system.

Unintentional Change

Two term presidents set out to ‘fix’ things and eventually achieve some of their goals after years of fighting for them. The change that follows was planned and expected.

The single term 4 year sprinter doesn’t have the time to plan things out properly and fight for them using the system. If they are going to get anything done they have to move fast. Because they have less time to get things done they also have less time to forecast the blowback of their actions and what we are left with is unintentional change.

Tweet after tweet reveals more and more of the Donald’s hand and it seems like he is leaning towards a one-term. No Jack is yet to be seen and he is inching ever so closer to that risky 4 bid.

If everything continues to move in the same direction, and at the same pace, we can expect to see harsher and faster efforts forced through by the Trump administration. Unintentional impacts of these changes could most certainly hit close to home for Trump.

Moving forward we should take everything that happens over the next three years with a grain of salt.

Keep an eye on your finances and keep your expenses low.

The effects of Trump’s third and fourth year will be felt all the way out in your backyard in RI. As long as you keep an eye on your individual expenses you might be able to escape unscathed.

Whether it’s Trump or Obama or anyone, it really doesn’t matter who controls the Presidency as long as they have their mindset on re-election.

But watch out if the President sees his reelection as unattainable or unlikely.

James Safford, a lifelong Rhode Islander, is a finance professional who sees politics through a bipartisan viewpoint. Send him an email at

James Safford
James Safford is a Renaissance man. He's interested in sports, politics, comics, movies, and writing about these things. Send him email at