No president has ever had lower approval ratings at this point in his presidency than President Donald Trump. And he knows that. So, like it or not for him, he knew he had to be more optimistic during his first speech to Congress last night. And he was positive. Kind of. At points, he almost channeled his inner President Barack Obama. (But don’t tell that to his supporters.)
“The President’s tone was improved, and it was more Presidential in appearance than we are accustomed to from him,” one of my former White House sources told me. But his speech was certainly not without fault. Still filled with much doom and gloom (citing illegals who murder innocents, calling terrorists “radical Islamists,” and creating V.O.I.C.E. for victims of crimes, horrific unemployment numbers, etc.), but some rays of sunshine came through.
His supporters probably loved it. Those who did not vote for him probably remain skeptical. Half of the room stood up during the speech and half of the room stayed seated. This speech did not change anyone’s mind it appears. Instead, as the New York Times pointed out: “It leaves allies and adversaries alike scratching their heads about what Mr. Trump really believes.”
The speech was manic.
Yes, he listed his “accomplishments,” but those accomplishments are mostly controversial policies that half of the country disagrees with. And then, in between the doom and gloom, it looks like he was seeing the “Obama Light.” He proposed variations of the Affordable Care Act, mentioned fixing the country’s infrastructure, promoted a potential “paid family leave” act, talked about a cleaner environment, and promised immigration reform–all just enough to call it his own. But these are Obama’s policies. Is he slowly turning into Obama? Whether he likes it or not, the Office will do that to a person. Angry rhetoric, as he has hopefully learned, will get him nowhere.
But, all in all, everyone on both sides is still very cautious. Trust is the number one issue Trump has at this point in his presidency, so let’s say we’ll all “believe it when we see it” (another D.C. insider told me).
After a month of chaos, and a dreary speech with controlled optimism, no one knows if Trump is a madman or someone becoming a introspective statesman. Is the “Obama Light” shining through the White House windows and starting to blind Trump? Will he have to turn into a progressive, positive statesman to unite the country? Will he finally get away from his image of America’s “carnage.” That remains to be seen. We’re all feeling a little manic this morning. Who was that man at the podium last night?
Cathy Areu is a liberal TV news analyst whose writing has appeared in The Washington Post Magazine, Today.com, USA Weekend, and People magazine.
“We’re all feeling a little manic this morning. Who was that man at the podium last night?”
The man liberals and “so-called” conservatives wrote off as a joke during the 2016 Presidential primaries and campaigns.
The democratic wing of congress sat down a lot. You would think they would stand up and clap a little when he spoke of equality and putting American citizens first. Its as if democrats do not care for the citizens of this country. You know… the ones who help vote them into congress.
“Is the ‘Obama Light’ shining through the White House windows and starting to blind Trump? Will he have to turn into a progressive, positive statesman to unite the country?” Cute as a button! Trump will be a progressive positive statesman soon. You are spot on. Cute cute cute!!