Congressional Republicans and insiders at the new White House administration admit frustration and concern about what they see as a visible and increasing possibility that President Donald Trump is already buckling under the pressures of the job.
Some feel the blustering billionaire with no political experience may “implode” after he “grew increasingly and visibly enraged” over reports of his plummeting job approval ratings, the low turnout for his inauguration and massive turnouts at protests.
Trump’s claim that he has “information” that he says proves “massive fraud” in the voting that gave Democrat Hillary Clinton a 2.9 million victory margin in the popular count even though he won the Electoral College tabulations.
Conservative columnist Jennifer Rubin called Trump “an emotional train wreck” in her “Right Turn” opinion piece for The Washington Post Wednesday.
That reality — the rotten poll numbers, the low turnout at his inauguration, the massive turnout at worldwide protests, his widely panned appearance at the CIA and his press secretary Sean Spicer’s disastrous debut with the White House press corps on Saturday — seems to have thrown the narcissistic ex-mogul into an emotional tailspin.
The Post reports that as events unfolded on Friday and Saturday “Trump grew increasingly and visibly enraged.” We know two things from this: 1.) He’s an emotional train wreck before much of anything has happened and 2.) Those close to him already started spilling the beans, perhaps to exonerate themselves and perhaps to communicate to their boss through the media. Trump’s ire simply confirms what we already knew, namely that his insatiable need for approval and his rage when he does not receive it make for an alarmingly unpresidential demeanor.
Added to Trump’s problems are increasing internal fights spurred by his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who already has an “enemies” list that includes some of the new President’s loyal and trust aids.
Rubin sees “an unhinged president, too many weak aides and an administration that cannot control itself, let alone coverage of its breakdowns.”
Long-time Trump followers predicted this would happen. Trump, they say, cannot function when he is under fire. The first days of his new administration are marked with a volley of his infamous Twitter “tweets” claiming his inauguration drew the “largest crowd of all time” when aerial photos show vast empty spaces that were packed and bulging at the more popular gatherings for Ronald Reagan in 1981 and Barack Obama in 2009.
Most credible estimates of Trump’s crowd put it at about 600,000, still a large amount of people but only about a third of the 1.8 million at Obama’s first inaugural. For Trump, anything less than being “the biggest” is a failure.
Nielsen’s broadcast ratings show the American television audience for Trump’s big day ranks seventh in recent inaugurations, well behind leader Ronald Reagan, second place finisher Barack Obama and even Presidents Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon.
As he did throughout his campaign, Trump ignores the truth and claims “alternative facts” support his lies to himself and others.
Reported the Washington Post:
Days after being sworn in, President Trump insisted to congressional leaders invited to a reception at the White House that he would have won the popular vote had it not been for millions of illegal votes … Two people familiar with the meeting said Trump spent about 10 minutes at the start of the bipartisan gathering rehashing the campaign. He also told them that between 3 million and 5 million illegal votes caused him to lose the popular vote.
Congressional sources developed over Capitol Hill Blue’s 22-plus years as the oldest political news site on the Internet say the same.
“He was off the wall,” said one. “He was like a child trying to get in the last word.”
Another, a Republican, says Trump “lies so much that he can no longer differentiate between what or is not true. That is the hallmark of a serial liar.”
Photos and videos of Trump in recent says show a 70-year-old man, the oldest President at the time of his election, clearly tired and agitated. The bags between his eye appear to hang lower.
“I think he is cracking under the strain,” says one White House insider.
He starts his term in office with 45% of Americans approving of the way he is handling his new job, 45% disapproving and 10% yet to form an opinion. Trump now holds the record for the lowest initial job approval rating as well as the highest initial disapproval rating in Gallup surveys dating back to Dwight D. Eisenhower.
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