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Republicans are jeering and the Democrats are cheering while some are searing over the recently concluded midterm elections.
I’m leering at the results and looking at a bunch of angry people.
No one is angrier than President Donald Trump. He began Nov. 7, the day after the midterm elections, declaring victory for himself and his party after losing the House. He conducted a news conference in which he accused me of being a comedian and told Jim Acosta he should be fired.
He insulted all the Republicans who did not “embrace” him and lost their midterm elections. He went after the media again as being very bad hombres and dodged questions about everything – including Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
He fired Sessions later.
Trump then installed a loyalist who doesn’t like the Mueller investigation. Late Wednesday afternoon Congressman Jamie Raskin called Sessions’ firing a “Constitutional Crisis,” and said the House Judiciary Committee would address the issue later Wednesday evening.
It now appears the daily news cycle is shorter than a presidential news conference. Trump entertained and insulted like a bad stand-up comic on open mic night for nearly and hour and a half on Nov. 7.
I left thinking that of all the insults and news to be made from the president’s appearance was a direct answer to one of my questions.
I kidded about Oprah Winfrey, which prompted the comedian remark, but the real question was something he inferred in his opening statements. He said he could work with the Democrats, but if they started to investigate him then the deal was off and he’d go after them.
His “My way or the highway,” approach was an attempt at intimidation. He further said if the Democrats didn’t play ball with him then he would blame everything on them, and that if the Democrats went after him then he would be “on a war footing.”
Chilling words to say the least.
He is making an excellent case for being the most transparent president in history – if not the most honest one.
But Trump has little care for honesty, the press, people who disagree with him or apparently members of the GOP who fail to kiss his . . . uhmmm ring.
So the Republicans are in a box. They’ve lost the House. They did cement their hold over the Senate, but many, including Senator Lindsey Graham are on the record as saying any firing of Jeff Sessions is a tipping point for their support of the president.
But Trump has proved time and again there is actually no tipping point. He pushes, he bullies and threatens those around him.
He said he wanted a softer tone, but he called me a comedian and Acosta a reprehensible human being who should be fired.
Wear it as a badge of honor, Jim my friend.
Trump is in desperation mode. Tilting at windmills and walking back and forth across the stage as he shouted his demented appellations at Acosta he did not resemble anything remotely presidential. Then he apparently pulled Jim Acosta’s press pass.
He called Acosta rude. Others have as well. It is something I’ve often been called. In fact after walking out of the press conference on Wednesday another reporter I respect said me and Acosta were the worst. Some say Acosta, me and others are trying to make it all about us. We only want more time in front of the camera.
Nothing could be further from the truth. We want answers. Our job puts us in front of a man who has called us the enemy of the people, “Fake News” and endangers us.
From this I will not back down. I will not criticize any tactic my fellow reporters take in pursuit of their job. I will not contribute to the divisiveness Trump himself is spreading. I will not play into that twisted game he enjoys so much.
I will stand there. I will call him on his blarney. Wednesday, I did not need the mic to call him out and he responded to me several times as I questioned him as he called us divisive. When he said we first complained about him not having enough news conferences and then complained about him being too accessible, I said that wasn’t true.
“No reporter in history has ever complained about a president being too accessible,” the comedian told him. He answered me. he pushed back, but he didn’t have an answer to it. He couldn’t answer it and be honest. He had to attack me with his answer.
At the end of the day the midterm elections totally threw Trump for a loop. After having two years in power and with little to show for having control of the Senate, House and the presidency, Trump now faces a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives that will investigate allegations of abuse and of criminal and corrupt activity of Trump’s White House.
It’s the last thing he wants and the first thing he’ll see after the New Year.
Welcome to Trump Land 2019. It’s going to be a hell of a ride.