On March 28, a White House press conference turned into a battlefield.
The contestants: White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer vs. April D. Ryan, the White House correspondent and Washington bureau chief for American Urban Radio Network.
Ryan noted that President Donald J. Trump would soon receive a visit from Condoleeza Rice, the former Secretary of State under President George W. Bush. She also noted that, in 2006, Trump had “called her a negative name.”
Although she didn’t utter the word, it was “bitch.”
Spicer: But at some point, the reality is that this president continues to reach out to individuals who’ve supported him, who didn’t support him, Republicans, Democrats, to try to bring the country together and move forward on an agenda that’s gonna help every American. That’s it. Plain and simple.
[Actually, it isn’t “plain and simple.” Since taking office, Trump has made no effort to “reach out to individuals…who didn’t support him.” Nor has he tried “to bring the country together.”
[On March 4, he libeled Barack Obama in a series of tweets, accusing the former President of illegally wiretapping his phones at Trump Tower. Since making that accusation, Trump has offered absolutely no proof to back it up.
[Nor has the Justice Department or FBI come forward with such evidence.]
So, if you’re asking what we’re doing, I think we continue to do it. Which is to bring groups together that have been supportive of him, that haven’t been supportive of him, but that to share a goal which is finding common ground on areas of national security, of personal security, of economic security, of job creation, of safer communities, of education, of healthcare, that can unite us as a country and make the country stronger.
[It’s ironic that Spicer would say the administration’s goal is “finding common ground on areas” such as “healthcare.” Trump’s version of “repeal and replace” for “Obamacare” totally ignored any input by Democrats. On March 23, the House failed to pass Trumpcare because Republicans couldn’t agree to support it.
[Following her face-off with Spicer, Ryan had a message of her own for The Washington Post: “This is just par for the course, unfortunately. But I’ll be back. I’ll be back.”]
* * * * *
Trump’s admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin has been well-established–by himself.
On the December 18, 2015 edition of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Trump said: “He’s running his country, and at least he’s a leader. Unlike what we have in this country.”
The program’s host, Joe Scarborough, noted: “Well, I mean, [he’s] also a person who kills journalists, political opponents, and invades countries. obviously that would be a concern, would it not?”
TRUMP: “I think our country does plenty of killing, also, Joe, so, you know. There’s a lot of stupidity going on in the world right now, Joe. A lot of killing going on. A lot of stupidity. And that’s the way it is.”
On July 22, 2016, Wikileaks released 19,252 emails and 8,034 attachments hacked from computers of the highest-ranking officials of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). Early reports traced the leak to Russian hackers.
At a press conference in Doral, Florida, Trump declared: “Russia, if you are listening, I hope you are able to find the 33,000 emails that are missing–I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
This was nothing less than treason—calling upon a foreign power, hostile to the United States, to interfere in its Presidential election.
As President, Trump has defended the leader of the Communist world against hostile journalists and American Intelligence agencies.
On February 5, he gave an interview to Fox News host Bill O’Reilly. As startled viewers watched, there occurred this exchange:
O’REILLY: “Do you respect Putin?”
TRUMP: “I do respect him but—”
O’REILLY: “Do you? Why?”
TRUMP: “Well, I respect a lot of people but that doesn’t mean I’m going to get along with him. He’s a leader of his country. I say it’s better to get along with Russia than not.
“And if Russia helps us in the fight against ISIS, which is a major fight, and Islamic terrorism all over the world —that’s a good thing. Will I get along with him? I have no idea.”
O’REILLY: “But he’s a killer though. Putin’s a killer.”
TRUMP: “There are a lot of killers. We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think—our country’s so innocent? You think our country’s so innocent?”
Trump launched his Presidential campaign on June 16, 2015.
According to The New York Times, by late October, 2016, he had aimed nearly 4,000 insulting tweets at 281 targets.
Among those insulted:
- The news media
- The disabled
- The Pope
Considering his hair-trigger temper and willingness to insult virtually anyone, Trump’s careful, even fawning attitude toward Vladimir Putin stands out.
Following Trump’s February 5 remarks on Putin, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said it best:
“I want to know what the Russians have on Donald Trump. I think we have to have an investigation by the FBI into his financial, personal and political connections to Russia, and we want to see his tax returns, so we can have truth in the relationship between Putin, whom he admires, and Donald Trump.”