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Rod Watson: 2018 will be ‘bigger and better than ever’ – trust me

Rod Watson

I can’t wait for Monday to get here. That’s how much I’m looking forward to 2018.

As President Trump says about almost everything, it’s going to be bigger and better than ever.

Just for starters, this will be the year that:

• The hysterical liberal fear that Republicans want to dismantle the federal government will be laid to rest once and for all, thanks in no small part to our very own Chris Collins.

No matter how the Clarence congressman’s ethics case turns out, it’s already clear how much he appreciates what the federal government can do for him and his friends — and even their relatives.

After investing and lending millions to developer Nick Sinatra’s companies — reaping between $65,000 and $4350,000 in income last year alone from the relationship — Collins is pushing Sinatra’s brother, John, an attorney, for a lifetime federal judgeship. He also had pushed a historic tax credit measure that could have benefited Nick Sinatra, his business buddy.

This all comes as the House Ethics Committee pretends to probe Collins’ efforts to get a National Institutes of Health staffer to help out with clinical trials of a drug that was being developed — unsuccessfully, it turned out — by Innate Immunotherapeutics, the biotech company in which he is a board member and the largest shareholder.

But hey, what are friends for? As we all learned in civics class, that’s exactly how government is supposed to work.

With so much to be gained by being in the federal government, the last thing Collins or any other wealthy Republican wants to do is get rid of it.

• Fresh off the publicity surrounding the upcoming corruption trials of former top aide Joseph Percoco and key figures in his Buffalo Billion program, Andrew Cuomo will parlay the notoriety into a full-fledged — if undeclared — campaign for president even as he runs for re-election as governor. The trials will do for Cuomo what the "Access Hollywood" tapes did for Trump, boosting his profile across a nation no longer persnickety about what it wants in its leaders.

And it couldn’t come at a better time.

Let’s face it: In a party of mealy-mouthed navel-gazers, Cuomo is the only Democrat with the smarts and rhetorical skills — not to mention moxie and mean streak — to take down an inveterate liar in 2020. And with accusations of insider dealing swirling all around him, Cuomo is almost an honorary Republican, a fact sure to attract lots of crossover votes.

Assuming he’s not indicted and Trump’s not impeached, 2018 will be the setup year for this epic battle of New Yorkers that will be more entertaining than any subway series or even a Bills-Giants Super Bowl. (Oops, sorry. We already had that.)

• And this will be the year when we all get our $4,000 pay raise, now that the GOP tax bill has been signed into law.

Of course, if it doesn’t pan out as promised, you’ll see massive demonstrations in front of the White House with angry workers summoning their inner Joe Wilson and shouting "You lie!" at President Trump. Journalists will ignore the protest because Trump lying will no longer be considered news.

But I don’t expect the protest to happen as I have every confidence the $4,000 raise is coming.

Don’t hesitate to start asking your boss about it on Tuesday.

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