No matter how often the president returns to his campaign season talking points of virulent anti-immigrant rhetoric, manic proposals for border security, and frenzied opposition to the status quo, the issues facing the United States under the Donald Trump presidency won’t be magically evaporating anytime soon.
Even still, the president continues to refuse to step out of the bubble of his campaign anyway.
At a Thursday White House event meant to promote the GOP tax reform package known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which the president signed into law late last year, Trump resorted to familiar past rhetoric about “draining the swamp.” He even fit in a reference to his campaign slogan “Make America Great Again,” which he has already moved to update for the 2020 presidential election.
He told those assembled:
‘The fact is, we don’t care about the donors and the special interests, we only care about you and your family and really making America great again — that’s what we care about, that’s why we’re here. From the day I took the oath of office, I’ve been fighting to drain the swamp, and sometimes it may not look like it, but believe me, we are draining the swamp. And there are a lot of unhappy people; you can see that. Every day, all you have to do is turn on the news. Every time you see me hit, you know that I’m draining the swamp. And people don’t like it.’
Check out the video below.
President Trump: “Sometimes it may not look like it, but believe me, we are draining the swamp” https://t.co/WUGMPgetV4
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) April 12, 2018
There’s a difference between the campaign season proclamations from Trump of how he would “drain the swamp” upon taking office and this one. During the campaign season, we didn’t have any public service record of Trump’s to go on in judging the meaningfulness of his stated determination to clear out corruption — now we do.
In that, there’s a fundamental disconnect from reality in the president’s logic here. Rather than media “hits” being about some sort of bias against his administration, negative news reports covering negative things about his administration are simply relaying facts. The record that the president has accumulated in office is anything but one of cleaning out corruption.
He has already had not one but two Cabinet secretaries leave their positions over travel scandals, and he hasn’t even been in office a full year and a half yet. The first to leave was Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price; more recently, VA Secretary David Shulkin was pushed out in part over revelations that he’d misused government money and time in connection to a trip he took overseas last year.
The examples of corruption don’t end there, extending, rather, to cover everything from the appointment of a former Goldman Sachs executive as Treasury Secretary to the entanglement of the president and his closest allies in private business interests.
Even still, despite all of these issues, the president still finds it nothing to claim that he’s doing a great job draining the swamp.
The individuals to whom he was speaking on Thursday were “over 100 workers and executives from over 40 companies that passed the savings they got from tax reform on to their employees in the form of bonuses, wage increases, employee benefits, or workforce investments,” in the description of Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters.
As could be expected, the president marked the occasion with a burst of social media activity.
In one post, he wrote:
‘Thank you to all of the American workers who [traveled] here today! This event is dedicated to YOU: the hardworking Americans who make this nation run. You love your country, you provide for your family, you have PRIDE in your work and you cherish our GREAT AMERICAN FLAG!’
Thank you to all of the American workers who travelled here today! This event is dedicated to YOU: the hardworking Americans who make this nation run. You love your country, you provide for your family, you have PRIDE in your work and you cherish our GREAT AMERICAN FLAG! #TaxCuts pic.twitter.com/RwaLpCRPh5
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 12, 2018
Is giving adoration to what is fundamentally a piece of cloth really on equal footing with issues of providing for the basic human needs of the people of the United States? What, is the president going to announce that food stamp recipients have to recite the pledge ten times in a row to get their benefits next?
Featured Image via Screenshot from the Video