It didn’t take long for the critics of President Trump to start commenting on cable news channels about a possible king complex. By Trump critics, I mean ordinary journalists.
President Trump is on an official state visit to the UK, at the invitation of Queen Elizabeth II. Trump is only the third American president to be extended such an invitation from her. Some reporters are openly criticizing him, characterizing his behavior as his desire to be King Donald. To make matters worse for them, it appears he is doing just fine in representing America in the UK.
While many of the British newspapers, notorious for tabloid journalism, are printing complimentary headlines about President Trump’s patriotism and respectful speeches, CNN had a field day Tuesday afternoon with some silly groupthink. Host Brooke Baldwin even included British journalist Harry Mount and encouraged him to trash Trump.
The hour began with Baldwin arguing that “the Queen of England is the one person who the President seems entirely deferential to, on his best behavior with.” Attempting to explain the President’s “deference” to the Queen, chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward pointed out that the President “seems to have a huge amount of respect for the institution of the monarchy,” suggesting “perhaps he likes the idea of being a king.”
CNN international correspondent Max Foster agreed: “He likes the idea of being a king, which would explain why he’s so reverential in the palace environment.” After Baldwin asked about the presence of the President’s adult children throughout the state visit, Foster remarked that “it’s not completely unprecedented for a head of state to bring along their children to these state dinners.”
It is as though CNN’s talking heads and show hosts are disappointed that the president is conducting himself appropriately during a state visit. How sad is that? And for Baldwin to question the inclusion of his adult children as a part of the visit, well, I suppose we should just expect that. The disgust of anyone with the Trump surname is palpable. The only one to avoid the snarky remarks of the anti-Trump voices was 13-year-old Barron, Trump’s youngest child who isn’t a part of the president’s entourage. CNN’s White House reporter Kate Bennett offered up her own analysis into the psyche of President Trump – bringing along his children suggests he’s all about passing on his power, you know, like a monarch. You can’t make this stuff up.
CNN wasn’t alone in dragging the next generation of Trumps into the discussion. ABC did it, too by noting they were with their father for some of the events “perhaps with an eye toward evoking the princes and princesses who call London home.”
I wonder where this stellar psychoanalysis was when President Obama and Michelle met with the Royal Family. There were several luncheons and meetings for them, including a state dinner. Michelle even took the two Obama daughters for tea with Prince Harry at Kensington Palace in 2016. Where was the speculation that Michelle just wants to pass along her power?
Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner are unpaid advisers to President Trump. Both have traveled around the world on behalf of his administration. It is not at all surprising that they are included in this trip. CNN’s international correspondent Max Foster even admitted it is “not unprecedented” that the president’s adult children tagged along after he agreed that Trump wants to be King Donald. It’s just something for the anti-Trumpers to complain about and fill cable news air time.
ABC News rattled off a list of grievances committed by the Trump kids.
Donald Trump Jr. posted on Instagram a photo of himself in white tie before Monday’s state dinner. His brother, Eric Trump, was part of the family’s Tuesday tour of the underground Churchill War Rooms and lingered over the chair from which the prime minister oversaw World War II. And Ivanka Trump, who doubles as a senior White House official, spent the day before her father’s arrival touring some of London’s art museums and then took her place by his side for a trade meeting Tuesday with Prime Minister Theresa May.
“Magical night at Buckingham Palace with my best friend!” she wrote, posting a photo on Instagram of herself alongside husband Jared Kushner, another senior White House aide.
Tiffany Trump, a Georgetown University law school student who is less frequently spotted with her father, also attended the dinner.
And all of them had front row seats at the joint news conference with Prime Minister Theresa May.
Just in case all of this isn’t quite enough to fan the flames of Trump derangement in America, NBC News offers some background on “Trump’s obsession” with the Royal Family. Liberal historian Doug Brinkley weighs in.
Pundits like historian Doug Brinkley have blamed Trump’s obsession on his autocratic political bent — he wanted to be “King Donald.” Or simply a penchant for outrageous marketing strategies. But the true source is likely a far more personal inheritance: A Trump family secret is that his mother worked as a maid in the household of steel magnate Andrew Carnegie.
Mary Anne McLeod was the 10th child of a fisherman, born into muck boots and peat smoke on a remote Scottish island. She grew up in a two-room cottage and probably got no more than an eighth-grade education before she left the Isle of Lewis in the 1920s, following older sisters who had nestled into a community of nannies, butlers and maids from the British Isles who worked for the robber barons of New York.
Trump has long claimed his mother came to America on a holiday. But the truth can be found in the 1930 U.S. Census, where McLeod is listed at the bottom of a lengthy retinue of butlers, footmen, chauffeurs, cooks and maids working for Louise Carnegie.
The NBC News piece goes on to say Mrs. Trump modeled herself as “a Queens Louise Carnegie” as President Trump’s father became a successful businessman. It all sounds like a stretch to me to justify an “obsession” with royalty, but that’s where the article went.
The good news among all this background noise is that all of the Trumps are representing America well overseas. The most important part of the 3-day trip is the 75th commemoration of D-Day. Perhaps we’ll see more focus on that for the rest of President Trump’s time abroad.