Tuesday, March 7, 2017

A different kind of president

Yesterday I was having second thoughts about the editorial I penned last week lauding President Trump for his address to the Congress. I was thankful that for at least an hour he seemed to adopt a different tone.

He actually appeared presidential.

But I noted in the last line of that editorial that I wondered how long it would last.

Not long.

I am now past the idea of finding Mr. Trump's activities on Twitter somehow clever and simply his way of bypassing the media and taking his message directly to the people.

The man is president of the United States, not simply another billionaire real estate mogul. Not a reality TV host. Is it too much to ask him to act like it.

What kind of guy gets up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday (aside from me and my preoccupation with updating our website) and starts Tweeting out attacks against his perceived opponents.

That's what the president did last Saturday, when he basically accused his predecessor, President Obama, of a crime, without a scintilla of proof. Trump, apparently fueled by some right-wing talk radio stations and websites, alleged Obama had tapped the phones of Trump Tower offices during the campaign in something like an updated version of the Watergate caper.

But he offered no proof of his claim, and he seemed even unaware of the legal hoops Obama would have had to go through to do any such thing. The latest Tweets came a day after Trump apparently aired out his staff, again upset with the way things were going and in particular new Attorney General Jeff Sessions' decision to recuse himself from any investigation into dealings with the Russians.

In the few days since, Trump has declined to back off his claims, instead simply asking Conress to investiate. His aides have been parsing their words carefully, but I'd like at least one of them to answer a simple question: Do you believe any of this stuff.

I guess Trump accomplished what he likely wanted. No one is now talking about the Russian story. Everyone is focused on his call for an investigation into whether President Obama tapped his phones.

Incredible.

Maybe Congress should simply take away the guy's phone.

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