Why have I undertaken the effort to offer a pedestrian overview of the president’s performance in various categories? Because I believe each silo offers the legitimate and objective opportunity to do what must be done — sometimes praise Trump, and sometimes criticize him. This is not a weak middle-ground position, and it is not a contrived “on one hand this and on the other hand that.” It is an objective and accurate assessment of the first 30 months of this presidency.
I also mentioned that this presidency has been less deserving of criticism than the president himself. Yes, I do here refer to the demeanor, temperament, maturity, and stature of the president personally, and not just on Twitter. I am shocked that he has not taken the strong economy as an opportunity to shore up his seriousness and credibility. His Twitter outbursts’ fundamental flaw is that they are never about anything other than him. His skin has gotten thinner since becoming president, something I didn’t know was even possible. It has made the most passionate of Always Trumpers cringe in private moments they don’t talk about on Fox News, and frankly, it has left his reelection prospects iffy when he otherwise would be running with 60 percent approval ratings. And yet I am told this is the Trump skeptics’ fault — that if we would just get in line and accept his “punching down” on Twitter, everything would be all right.
Might I suggest everyone has it backwards? That there is nothing, and I mean nothing, this president craves more than the acceptance of people — and that if his most ardent supporters would make it clear they want to see him govern, lead, and act like a president, he might, just might, do so? I believe those who have enabled this kind of behavior cost the Republicans dearly in the 2018 midterms. And I believe they will cost us the president’s reelection in 2020 (or at least put it at huge, huge risk) if something does not change.