CNN’s senior media reporter and host of Sunday’s Reliable Sources, Brian Stelter, said it might be time to ask if Donald Trump is racist and mentally ill. He said the recent violence in Charlottesville, Virginia have spurred debates among Americans on social media, at the dinner, or wherever friends and family meet about the competency of President Trump. And those questions may seem out of bounds or “too hot” for live television. Here they are (via Real Clear Politics) [partial transcript]:
BRIAN STELTER, CNN: Questions that feel out of bounds, off limits, too hot for TV. Questions like these: Is the President of the United States a racist? Is he suffering from some kind of illness? Is he fit for office? And if he’s unfit, then what?
Since President Trump’s inauguration, there’s been a lot of tiptoeing going on. His actions have been described as unpresidential, unhinged and sometimes even crazy. That word crazy can be interpreted several different ways. It gets said more in private than it gets said on TV...
This brings me back to the questions that are tough to ask out loud on national television. Is the President of the United States suffering from some sort of illness? Is he racist? Is he fit to be commander in chief? And one more, is it time for objective journalists, I don’t mean opinion folks I mean down the middle journalists to address these questions head on and how do they do it?
Stelter listed off Democrats and Republicans who have questioned the stability and competency of Trump. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who was caught on a hot mic saying she was worried, responding to Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) who thinks the president, is crazy. Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) called for his removal through the 25th Amendment. Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel spoke about making President Trump a powerless king. These are the people who Stelter provided as evidence for this so-called off-the-record discussion about Trump: a bunch of liberals from deep blue states and a late night talk show host, whose show is broadcast from Los Angeles. Are we serious here? Of course, California liberals, nay, most of the Democratic Party thinks Trump is mentally ill and racist.
What’s odd about this segment is that CNN has ventured outside of the concrete jungles of liberal America and found that rural America still likes Trump; they’re not abandoning him, and feel that his agenda is laying the groundwork for economic growth and job creation. So, in the most liberal bastions of the country, where most of the news media is headquartered, it’s not shocking that these questions about Trump are being asked among the nation’s die hard progressive cohort.
Stelter also cited The Los Angeles Times editorial board, which recently called Trump a danger to our democracy and our institutions.
The man in the White House is reckless and unmanageable, a danger to the Constitution, a threat to our democratic institutions.
Last week some of his worst qualities were on display: his moral vacuity and his disregard for the truth, as well as his stubborn resistance to sensible advice. As ever, he lashed out at imaginary enemies and scapegoated others for his own failings. Most important, his reluctance to offer a simple and decisive condemnation of racism and Nazism astounded and appalled observers around the world.
Some people clearly understand this. On Monday, after Trump suggested that “alt-left” counter-protesters were as much to blame as Nazis and white supremacists for the fiasco in Charlottesville, a courageous CEO — Kenneth Frazier, the chief executive of Merck & Co. — resigned from the president’s American Manufacturing Council in protest. His departure, which the ever-gracious president greeted with derision, led to an exodus of other commission members.
enate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Rep. Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) are the two most-powerful men in Congress. Both have fired off the occasional potshot but for the most part have stood firmly behind this wildly flawed president, despite the taunts and insults Trump hurled at them from his Twitter redoubt.
What holds them back? Craven, self-serving political calculations designed to protect their careers, and dwindling hope that the president, despite everything, will help them move their long-delayed legislative agenda.
Their silence is shameful.
Republicans and conservatives around the country should be just as concerned as Democrats about Trump’s conflicts of interest, his campaign’s relationship with the Russians and whether he engaged in obstruction of justice. They should call him out when he sows division, when he dog-whistles, when he emboldens bigots. They should stand up for global human rights, for constructive engagement with the rest of the world and for other shared American values that transcend party allegiances.
Rejecting the president of one’s own party could mean alienating friends, crossing allies, damaging one’s chances of advancement or risking one’s career altogether for a matter of principle. But that’s the very definition of leadership.
No one can sit on the sidelines now. It’s time for Republicans to show some spine.
Yeah, here’s the thing members of the LA Times editorial board, we don’t care what you think. You’re liberals. You’re always going to be against the president. We don’t need your advice on how we should behave concerning our voting choices. We don’t need to be told how to vote. We don’t need your concern trolling. The Russia collusion story is a nothing burger. After months of investigating, nothing felonious has been brought forward. Yes, the Russians did try to contact members of the Trump team during the 2016 election; they all turned them down. In fact, they all knew the proper protocol regarding these communications. They were also uninterested in meeting with the Russians. Sort of undercuts the whole Donald, Jr. trip up, which now looks like it was merely a horrific choice in judgment, yet nothing has come of that either. And dog-whistles? You mean, speech that triggers progressives, which could merely be saying things like, “the most qualified person for the job.” The latest example: women who have blonde hair.
I have no doubts that such conversations are occurring in the country about Trump, but they’re from people who didn’t like him anyway. People who despise this man and still cannot get over the fact that he beat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.
The president is facing these accusations after white nationalists descended into Charlottesville to protest the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. Far left Antifa protesters arrived, fights broke out, scores of people were injured, and one woman was killed when a white nationalist rammed through a group of counter demonstrators. Trump condemned the violence, but said both sides were responsible, which sparked outrage across the liberal media. Frankly, Trump could have issued a strong condemnation and it still wouldn’t have satisfied the legions of the Left. Is that an out of touch thing to say—blaming both sides? Polling suggests otherwise.