Although President Trump has welcomed and held joint press conferences in the East Room of the White House with five major world leaders from Japan, Great Britain, Canada, Israel, and Germany, it is very different to leave the comfort of your own surroundings, even if that is the White House, to venture off onto the world stage.
The pressure will be mounting as the president anticipates making appearances with leaders on the world stage in Hamburg at the G20 in July.
As the saying goes, “You can fool some of the people some of the time but you can’t fool all of the people all the time.” It may be very difficult to stand on the world platform with the very leaders you have threatened, ridiculed, and besmirched throughout your campaign and during your first hundred days in office and expect them to take you seriously.
In an effort to throw raw meat to his base during the campaign, President Trump made many campaign declarations, including cutting U.S. support for NATO; threatening the European Union’s existence; propping up former KGB Colonel, Russian President Vladimir Putin; becoming “Mr. Brexit”; siding with some of the extreme right wing elements in Europe, including Nigel Farage; and, as a result, he denigrated the relationship that the United States has had with Europe for the last seventy years.
Just this week, we learned that President Trump’s latest budget proposal aims to cut the State Department’s budget by up to 31 percent and foreign aid by 28 percent; massively cut funding to the United Nation’s climate change and peacekeeping efforts; cut contributions to the World Bank by $650 million; slash EPA, Public Education and completely cut funding for The National Endowment for the Arts and The National Endowment for the Humanities; all while increasing military spending by $54 billion dollars, an increase of 10%.
Don’t forget an additional $2.8 billion for the Mexico Border Wall project, which could now be a moot proposition since the level of immigration coming across our Southern Border seems to have dropped off dramatically.
Along with many other cuts that would literally defund much of the Federal Government, too numerous to go through in this report, that would leave so many important positions unfilled, one is relieved when realizing that this “America First-Skinny Budget” is Dead On Arrival when it comes under scrutiny by those bipartisan watchful eyes on Capitol Hill.
“The real March Madness is President Trump’s budget,” said Senator Ed Markey Democrat of Massachusetts while Republican Senator from South Carolina Lindsey Graham called it “dead on arrival – It’s not going to happen…It would be a disaster.”
“If you take soft power off the table then you’re never going to win the war….What’s most disturbing about the cut in the State Department’s budget, it shows a lack of understanding what it takes to win the war.”
In addition, there are several other contentious issues causing President Trump to mount his early morning Twitter attacks, which now require a team of triage specialists to sort out.
The latest issues include the Travel Ban Temporary Restraining Order and the “Trump-Ryan Care” debacle, which may, in fact, keep “dreaded Obamacare” the law of the land.
But the daddy of all Twitter paranoia is that for more than two weeks now we have been waiting for evidence of the incendiary Twitter charge that one president, Donald Trump, made against another president, Barack Obama, when Trump accused Obama of personally wiretapping his home at Trump Tower in New York City.
As I am writing this today, the leaders of the Senate Intelligence Committee wrote in a statement that there is “no indication” Trump Tower was secretly surveilled during the presidential election, as President Donald Trump claimed without evidence.
To twist a well-known response by another former POTUS – “I guess it all depends on what your definition of the word ‘wiretap’ is.”
Although I have touched on this issue before, I think another discussion of its importance bears repeating at this time.
Yes, it is important for President Trump to admit that his accusation was not true… even if this was just an embarrassing outburst of anger.
The time for the president to own up to his statements is long past.
It is also long past the time for asking others to “reinterpret” what the president said or what he really meant. This is not fair to his aides, who are struggling daily to keep up.
Just yesterday, instead of simply putting an end to all of this, President Trump forced his spokesperson Sean Spicer to double down. Spicer accused the Government Communications Headquarters for the British Government of “spying on President Obama’s behalf” based on a Fox News report.
This accusation was met by an immediate response from British GCHQ and British Prime Minister Theresa May’s spokesperson with an empathetic denial of any such activity – and almost caused an international incident with one of America’s closest allies. According to reports, Mr. Spicer called the British Government to apologize.
In a time of so many impending crises, like the North Korea nuclear threat, Vladimir Putin’s desired takeover of Eastern Europe, and the multiple ramifications of a failed Syrian State, our nation longs for a leader like Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy or Ronald Reagan.
So what the president says matters and nothing less than the credibility of the office is at stake.
The American people and the world community need to believe what the president says and trust the plain meaning of his words.
Just have a look at your predecessors, Mr. President. They are proof that twisting the truth does not often work out well:
LBJ on the Gulf of Tonkin
Nixon on Watergate
Reagan on Iran-Contra
Clinton on Monica Lewinsky…the list goes on.
As another example, President Kennedy spoke the truth to the American people and publicly took the rap for the Bay of Pigs fiasco. He also learned an important lesson which served him well. As a result, a year later when the Cuban Missile Crisis threatened to send us all up in smoke, that youthful World War ll veteran saved us all from World War lll.
President Trump – after only two months of your presidency, it is not too late to adjust your course. As president and the leader of the free world, you will be held to account by both politics and history for exactly what you say and what you promise.
Jon-Christopher Bua is a White House Correspondent and Political Analyst appearing on-camera and radio via Talk Media News. Twitter: @JCBua