Helping Foreign Rulers, Just by Comparison
The drama surrounding Donald Trump’s administration could fuel many seasons on Comedy Central. Consider this: in his first six months in office, Trump has fired 12 senior people in his administration, an average of two exits per month. The average is deceptive: director of communications, foul-mouthed Anthony Scaramucci was sacked after 10 days, acting attorney general Sally Yates lasted 11 days, and national security adviser Mike Flynn was fired after 23 days in office. The most shocking exits were of FBI chief James Comey after 110 days at work that included probing Russian meddling in US elections, and that of Reince Priebus, former White House chief of staff, whose tenure lasted an epic 189 days. Trump could walk into the sets of ‘ The Apprentice’, a TV show he hosted through 2004-15. At the climax of every episode, he would dismiss failed contestants, exclaiming, “You’re fired.” His executive powers, too, have been dented in the Senate and Congress. In mid-July, Trump’s attempt to slash medical insurance for millions of Americans was shot down in the Senate. Three Republican Senators, led by war-hero and former presidential candidate John McCain, voted against Trumpcare. Recently, Congress voted decisively, with a margin of 419 to 3, to maintain sanctions against Russia against the president’s wishes. Trump could not veto this sort of majority; Congress would simply make it into law after the veto. Clearly, lawmakers do not trust the president. Grumbling, Trump signed off on it. Trump’s actions have alienated many who had supported his campaign. His grip on executive authority and knowledge about important issues look tenuous. Such fickleness at the top office of the planet’s largest economic and military power should worry everyone — except the people at Comedy Central.