Wednesday, October 25, 2017

What did Donald Trump do today?

He mentioned for at least the third time in less than a day that Republican senators gave him a "standing ovation" at a lunch meeting.

Trump's two morning tweets on the subject of the clapping GOP senators did for him came a day after two retiring Republican members, Sens. Corker (R-TN) and Flake (R-AZ) attacked him with the sort of anger normally associated with Trump himself. No other details of the applause at a Trump-GOP strategy lunch on tax policy have emerged, other than what Trump himself has reported. 

It is customary to stand when the President enters a room, but it is actually fairly likely that Trump is telling the truth about the applause. Trump is notoriously susceptible to flattery, even from people he loathes, and is prone to demanding it when it is not spontaneously offered. His former chief of staff Reince Priebus pioneered the tactic of providing Trump with twice-daily "briefings" on positive news coverage--or, where that is lacking, simply good photographs of him.

Aside from Flake and Corker, the meeting included senators who have recently called Trump out for draft-dodging, accused him of failing to stand up to Nazis, said he was leading the country into "darkness," claimed that he was damaging the Republican Party, commiserated with Democratic senators about his precarious mental state, critiqued his war on the free press, declared his presidency unsalvageable, called his treatment of women distasteful, asked him to "please just stop" degrading the dignity of his office, accused him of being part of "the swamp," criticized his obsession with the NFL, said he was more interested in campaigning than governing, and threatened him with a year-long vacancy if he tried to fire attorney general Jefferson Sessions, among other things.

Why should I care about this?

  • A president who so clearly craves approval is one who can be easily manipulated.