One of the bigger criticisms about President Barack Obama’s personality is that he’s thin-skinned. Gary Bauer wrote at Human Events in 2012 how Obama just doesn’t seem to like being criticized.
Parts of [ ex-Arizona Governor Jan ] Brewer’s book are critical of Obama, and according to Brewer, he told her, “that he didn’t feel that I had treated him cordially.” Obama then quickly walked away upset. Brewer later described Obama as “somewhat thin-skinned and a little tense to say the least…”
The same assessment was made by Kansas Senator Pat Roberts after he and other Senate Republicans had a combative meeting with the president last year. “He needs to take a Valium before he comes in and talks to Republicans,” Roberts said. “He’s pretty thin-skinned.”
The Obama Administration stopped speaking to Fox News due to negative coverage and even had a Democratic strategist claim to Los Angeles Times he was told not to be on the channel or else.
The message was, “We better not see you on again,” said the strategist, who spoke on condition of anonymity so as not to run afoul of the White House. An implicit suggestion, he said, was that “clients might stop using you if you continue.”
Obama also went after CBS News White House correspondent Major Garrett earlier this year over a question regarding the American citizens locked up in Iran. The Washington Post called Obama’s response plain scoffing
“I’ve got to give you credit, Major, for how you craft those questions. The notion that I am content as I celebrate with American citizens languishing in Iranian jails, Major, that’s nonsense, and you should know better.”
Don’t forget this tantrum from April towards the U.S. Senators who were against the Iran deal.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) April 12, 2015
Obama’s thin skin has prompted conservatives to derisively call him “President Stompy Foot!” and for good reason. But this sounds a lot like the current “front runner” for the GOP nomination Donald Trump. Trump is known for being particularly touchy about almost anyone criticizing him, including those who had praised him in the past.
— Matt Welch (@MattWelch) September 22, 2015
It wouldn’t be the first time Trump decided to attack someone who didn’t appear to like him. He suggested Megyn Kelly should take another vacation last night (24 hours after promoting his appearance on Fox and Friends), threatened to sue Club for Growth, and went after Rand Paul during last week’s debate pretty much unprovoked. Trump’s lashing out has Rich Lowry wondering why The Donald doesn’t just chillax.
It’s kind of sad to think of Trump sitting in his PJs and slippers at night with a warm glass of milk watching cable TV and feeling wounded by every jibe and slighting reference. But that’s evidently what the frontrunner for the Republican president nomination does.
Unfortunately, Rich he’s just taking a page out of Obama’s playbook. Throw a hissy fit over negative coverage, then retweet all the “BLARGY BLARG” outrage from supporters planning to boycott Fox. Of course he also did this to Morning Joe back in July:
SCARBOROUGH: You aren’t really that thin-skinned, are you?
TRUMP: Yes, I am thin-skinned!
SCARBOROUGH: We’ve been talking about you so much. We are ravaged because everybody said that your campaign was a joke, that you were going to go away. We had one of the top editors in America come on three weeks ago, yelling at Mika, being offended and shocked. And then of course…
BRZEZINSKI: He stormed off.
SCARBOROUGH: …he put you on the cover of your magazine three weeks later. Stormed off. This is hilarious. You are incredibly thin-skinned, my friend.
To give Trump credit, he at least admits to being thin-skinned, but is that really the kind of leader Americans want? John McCain was asked about his temper during the 2008 race. Jennifer Rubin called Newt Gingirch a cry baby in 2012 and questioned whether his temperament was right for the Oval Office. Why can’t similar questions be raised of Trump? What happens if a President Trump meets Vladimir Putin and they don’t get along? Will Trump lash out on Twitter, then proceed to start implementing massive tariffs? Or will he just go nuclear? Is he going to start banning White House correspondents from the White House briefing room if they don’t do the kind of coverage he wants? If he does that, isn’t that breaking the First Amendment?
Maybe Trump really is hoping all the populist “anger and rage” will get him into the White House. But it just seems weird and unwise for “the base” to want their own version of Obama in the Oval Office. But maybe being thin-skinned, with a huge ego, a bombastic attitude, and a cult of personality is all it takes to win presidential elections these days. If that’s the case, then Odin help us all.