This week, the now deceased former President George H.W. Bush has been remembered across the United States, including via a state funeral on Wednesday in Washington, D.C. — the first of its kind in a dozen years. In stark contrast to the recent high profile passing of the long serving Republican U.S. Senator John McCain, current President Donald Trump showed up this time — but not without making his egotism clear, according to a new report from The New York Times.
The publication states that this week, Trump has been “snappish with aides” over having to share the national spotlight with the nation’s 41st president. The Times adds that he was “impatient for the memorials to end but expressed pride in himself for remaining publicly civil,” basing their reporting on the testimony of unnamed administration officials.
Even incorporating some exaggeration — which is (baselessly) giving the president the benefit of the doubt here — that’s a low position for a president of the United States to be in. When Trump acts remotely normally, it’s a big deal.
Ironically enough, he has publicly ranted this week about topics other than the supposed success of his administration taking up space in the news, although he didn’t mention the ceremonies surrounding Bush. Instead, he again went after the Russia investigation, claiming after a Rasmussen poll had his approval rating at 50 percent that it would be even higher — around 75 percent — if not for the probe.
Although the investigation as led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller remains substantive and definitely ongoing, for the president to suggest that a full one-fourth of the country has broken with him over that one issue reveals just how hugely he’s paranoid over it. What’s he hiding?
He’s offered some public comment about Bush, although he did not speak at the funeral this Wednesday, which The Times attributes to his history of tension with the Bush family who according to reports didn’t even vote for him in the 2016 election. That tension ran concurrent to the president skipping former First Lady Barbara Bush’s funeral, which unfolded earlier this year. Trump’s absence made this week the first time he’s interacted at all with former presidents since his inauguration.
In the past, Trump had mocked the elder Bush’s description of American inspiration to service as a “thousand points of light” — although that didn’t stop him from doing a complete turnaround and offering the concept some respect in a publicly released statement on George H.W. Bush’s death.
Friday, the president and First Lady together offered:
‘Through his essential authenticity, disarming wit, and unwavering commitment to faith, family, and country, President Bush inspired generations of his fellow Americans to public service — to be, in his words, ‘a thousand points of light’ illuminating the greatness, hope, and opportunity of America to the world.’
The next day, the president teetered on the brink of making the story all about him and tweeted:
‘President George H.W. Bush led a long, successful and beautiful life. Whenever I was with him I saw his absolute joy for life and true pride in his family. His accomplishments were great from beginning to end. He was a truly wonderful man and will be missed by all!’
Featured Image via YouTube screenshot