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A Tortoise File

The Trump hangover

The Trump presidency is ending. Except it’s not. What’s happened in the past few years – in the past few weeks – will take years more to fix.

The Trump hangover

First published
Monday 18 January 2021

Last updated
Monday 25 January 2021

Why this story?

The Trump presidency ends this week – or does it? Although the official handover of power to Joe Biden will take place on Wednesday, 20 January 2021, Trump and his supporters have never really stood on ceremony. The riots at the Capitol Building showed, clearer than almost anything else could, that the resentments Trump exploited during his rise to power have not gone away. They are likely to simmer over the next four years, perhaps to boil over, once again, at the time of the next presidential election.

This is the starting point of this Tortoise File: that Trump and his politics are not done. Far from it. What we witnessed at the Capitol was, as the former Trump adviser Fiona Hill tells our Slow Newscast, “a certain sort of coup” – and that, by itself, will take years to process. Then there are the other factors this File considers: the trials that Trump could be dragged into; the underground groups that will keep the flame alive; the prospect of another run in 2024. We shudder to think: might 45 become 47? Peter Hoskin and David Taylor, editors