Corker: White House is a ‘day-care center’
Republican Sen. Bob Corker “has done the country the immense favor of acknowledging the obvious,” said Michelle Goldberg in The New York Times. Namely, that President Trump “cannot be trusted with the power he holds.” The influential Tennessee senator, who chairs the Foreign Relations Committee, said that Trump’s top aides are fighting to save “our country from chaos,” and described the White House as “an adult day-care center” where aides babysit a president prone to toddler-like tantrums. After Trump tweeted out a barrage of counterattacks on Corker, the senator accused Trump of treating the presidency like “a reality show” and setting the nation “on the path to World War III.” Corker said most Republican senators feel the same way. Now, when will the rest speak up?
“If Trump is such a toddler, why did Corker enable his rise in the first place?” asked Pascal- Emmanuel Gobry in TheWeek.com. Corker did more than most to help Trump win the backing of the GOP establishment, campaigning with him and urging the party to unite behind its nominee despite serious concerns about his psychological fitness to lead. But now that Corker has decided not to run for re-election, he has apparently rediscovered his principles. “The bargain Republicans made when they decided to support Trump was that his personality could be, if not quarantined, then at least compartmentalized,” said Paul Waldman in The American Prospect. Instead, “one major issue after another winds up being shaped by Trump’s personal whims and resentments.” By feuding with Corker, Trump probably just lost one more critical vote for the GOP’s tax plan. With a 52-48 majority in the Senate, Republicans need every vote they can get.
Publicly, the White House is pushing back against Corker, said Josh Dawsey in Politico.com. But many aides admit that behind the scenes, they spend a lot of their time “managing the president, just as Corker said.” The aides say they struggle to contain the president’s volcanic anger, promising to carry out impulsive orders “next week” or just changing the subject. Trump, meanwhile, is “already chafing” at the controls instituted by Chief of Staff John Kelly, and sometimes purposely sends out tweets that he knows will make Kelly and other aides cringe. “They’re not presidential, I know,” Trump tells them, grinning triumphantly. The next day, he tweets some more. ■