The President of the United States is, ostensibly, the most powerful person in the world. With just a few words, the President can shift the stock market, create a federal agency, or bomb a country. One would think that even the weakest man, once placed in the office, would feel like he always has the upper hand when he walks in the room.
Then there’s Donald Trump. The press briefing format is stacked nearly 100% in his favor. He gets to decide which reporters get to ask questions. He gets to cut them off if he likes. He gets to decide when the whole thing is over. He even gets to plant a few people from propaganda outlets he can call on for a friendly question. Yet here’s a man who’s so insecure, so hapless, so broken, that he’s afraid of taking on a mere gang of reporters.
Yet Trump is still so afraid of facing the press corps, he actually felt compelled to line yesterday’s ad hoc press briefing room with drunk cheering members of his own country club. How insecure to you have to be to need a cheering section in the room with you, when you’re President of the United States, and your opponents are mere reporters? How much self doubt has crept in about your ability to face the media? How thoroughly have you given up on yourself?
That’s where we’re now at with Donald Trump. He stopped enjoying himself a long time ago. We’ve all watched his self-confidence gradually melt away during one failed press briefing after another. The old Trump, who arrogantly smirked insulted his way through briefings, is long gone. We’re left with a Donald Trump who doesn’t want to be out there, is afraid to be out there, and needs his own cheering section to convince him that he even belongs out there. This guy is melting before our eyes.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report