Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Don't hold your breath waiting for 'presidential'

For more than a year now, I have asked only for one thing from President Donald Trump.

Act presidential.

I understood what we were getting. Trump is all about Trump. Always has been. Likely always will be. He was a real estate magnate turned reality TV show host. He parlayed a groundswell of unease among middle America - those who believed they were no longer being heard, or especially cared about - by Washington into a run for the White House.

Along the way, he proved adept at knocking off one adversary after another. First came all those GOP wannabes. Then he polished off Hillary Clinton in the general election.

He did it in his own inimitable way - usually by attacking and mocking his opponents.

Little Marco.

Lyin' Ted.

Boring Jeb.

Crooked Hillary.

But I also remember Trump specifically saying this was his campaign mode, that if he were to win the White House, his demeanor would change, would, in a word, be more presidential.

I'm still waiting.

Friday night the president was in southwestern Pennsylvania trying to pump up the flagging candidacy of Republican Rick Saccone, who is trailing Democratic challenger Conor Lamb in a district Trump won by 20 points just two years ago. True to form, Trump fell back on his tried-and-true campaign gambit.

He started calling people names.

He blasted the Democrat as "Lamb the Sham," voicing the Republican mantra that sending Lamb to Washington would be just one more puppet in the flock of Nancy Pelosi.

Trump barely mentioned Saccone.

Instead he focused on his favorite topics - himself and those who oppose him.

It was classic Trump, the Narcissist-in-Chief.

He mocked Lamb's good looks, insisting "I think I'm better looking."

This was Trump unleashed, off the script. He rambled for more than an hour, lashing out at his perceived enemies.

He attacked "Meet the Press" and MSNBC anchor Chuck Todd as a "sleeping son of a bitch." Yes, this is the president of the United States speaking.

Of course, no Trump appearance would be complete without a shot at Hillary Clinton. And "Pocahontas," his mocking reference to Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

He took credit for "saving" the Winter Olympics in South Korea, said they "wouldn't have happened" without Trump.

And finally he attacked Rep. Maxine Waters, a black Democrat from California, as a "low-IQ individual."

The crowd roared its approval.

I did not.

Lastly, the president defended his this act, ripping those - including me I guess - who wish for him to be presidential. He said that he could act presidential, but then nobody would be there.

You see, that's the point. Not that he is presidential. But that he is popular and draws large crowds.

This isn't going to change. Neither is Trump. This is what he is. It is what we elected.



More like a carnival barker.

And about as sincere.


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