Politics is a matter of methodology. Once the method is established, it doesn't matter who is in office, the system will go on with only minor changes in any direction.
I wish that were an original thought, but it belongs to a great political philosophist named Jacques Ellul. Had we elected George Wallace in '68 things may have been different than they were, but the difference would have been marginal. Could Goldwater have significantly changed things? Did FDR ruin the country? Were we destroyed by Warren G. Harding? Did Wilson keep us out of WWI as was his desire? By the time any person reaches a position of authority in office, THIS sytem precludes them from making drastic and sweeping changes. Other systems/methodologies have different results, but when the method is established, the process will flow in that direction. Only revolution will make a sweeping change and that change would involve a change in methodology.
When I hear how much better/worse things will be with candidate A or B for whatever office and then look at the results over time, I tend to believe that Ellul was right. What might have been is often just wishful thinking from both sides.
Yeah, I know...You don't agree. That's OK. Its been a long time since the revolution and by all indications it will be quite awhile before another occurs.