Trump, Pence & Hamilton
Being president entails a number of talents. One important part of being the nation’s chief executive is growing a thick skin to criticism. Our most recent presidents, George W. Bush and Barrack Obama, both have been on the receiving end of withering attacks.
I thought about that as I reviewed the Twitter messages sent by President Elect Donald Trump on Sunday, November 11th. The first set of messages related to the cast of the Broadway show Hamilton. They had a message for Vice President Elect Mike Pence, who attended the production November 19th. The basic idea they were communicating was this – you must look out for the interests of all Americans once you take office. If you haven’t already seen the message, use this link.
Donald Trump then began the Twitter storm, demanding an apology from the cast of Hamilton. That cast has made it clear no apology is forthcoming. Pence had a much different take on this. The vice president elect understands this sort of thing happens to elected officials and appears to have no problem with it.
Then there was the skit on Saturday Night Live featuring Trump, played once again by Alec Baldwin, bumbling through his transition. Trump Tweeted about that, saying he wants “equal time.” (Note: Equal time rules only apply during an election campaign. The election is over, so equal time rules to not apply.) You can view the skit at this link.
Call me a cynic, but we’ve seen this tactic before. Trump is trying to take attention away from a couple of other news items not favorable to the president elect. The first is his $25 million payout to settle one of the pending lawsuits against Trump University. The second is a meeting he held with business executives from India and the subject of the talks had nothing to do with the interests of the nation, but rather, Trump’s financial business.
Trump should be busy working on his transition, staffing the 4,000 federal positions he must fill. Instead, he is having a public feud with popular culture. Is this the way it’s going to be once he occupies the White House?
Donald Trump must learn what both George W. Bush and Barrack Obama learned early in their presidencies. Presidents must withstand harsh attacks on a regular basis. You had better get used to it.