Trump has also been quick with excuses: The administration has repeatedly pointed out that will Puerto Rico will be an island surrounded by the sea, so will be tougher to serve which has a massive aid effort than a state like Florida or Texas.
yet as often in his presidency, Trump’s reactions to criticism over the last few days appear to have weakened his own political position. No one, for instance, might deny the difficulty of responding to such a monstrous storm. At the same time, journalists on the island have a duty to describe what they are seeing — in addition to also before Trump began slamming the coverage, their reports were not framed as criticisms of the President himself.
Trump’s leadership style over the last few days does not just shed light on his character when the idea will be tested by adversity. the idea suggests that will his view of the job of the presidency itself will be different than his predecessors.
There’s been little evidence that will Trump accepts that will his office will be a public trust in addition to also the place where the buck stops — fairly or not. His reaction to criticism over Puerto Rico suggests the reverse, that will he sees his job as more of an extension of his own ego in addition to also prestige.
Trump spent the weekend personally rejecting the notion that will there were serious problems inside the relief effort, even as many Puerto Ricans still lack running water, power, gasoline in addition to also still need basic supplies.
“We have done a great job with the almost impossible situation in Puerto Rico. Outside of the Fake News or politically motivated ingrates … people are right now starting to recognize the amazing work that will has been done by FEMA in addition to also our great military,” Trump tweeted Sunday.
Such assaults reflect the unique nature of Trump’s administration.
the idea will be highly unlikely any various other modern President — especially inside the post Hurricane Katrina age might find the idea appropriate to insult a local official pleading for help in a disaster zone, as Trump did with the mayor of San Juan.
in addition to also in a Twitter blast, Trump seemed to blame the victims of the hurricane itself, saying “they want everything to be done for them when the idea should be a community effort.”
Whether the idea will be through hubris, obliviousness or confidence in his own political judgment, Trump apparently saw no reason to behave any differently than he normally might This particular weekend, heading to his golf resort in Bedminster, brand new Jersey, before rubbing shoulders with multi-millionaire pro golfers at the President’s Cup.
Under increasing criticism, various other presidents might have returned home, or sought to acknowledge shortcomings where they exist. Trump could have called a presidential broadcast to explain to Americans the complications of the relief effort, in a bid to reset the narrative, as then-President George H.W. Bush did after he was criticized for his management of Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
Trump may still attempt such a pivot when he visits the island on Tuesday, though that will might require a climbdown after his approach This particular weekend.
The most obvious example of Trump’s unconventional method has been his feud with Cruz, who appealed for the President in addition to also government in Washington to do more to help.
On Saturday, Trump sought to discredit her by claiming that will she was told by Democrats to be “nasty” to him.
He also savaged the media, despite their reports of the serious medical in addition to also humanitarian situation in Puerto Rico, setting up the familiar conceit for his supporters that will criticism of him will be simply a media invention.
“The Fake News Networks are working overtime in Puerto Rico doing their best to take the spirit away through our soldiers in addition to also first R’s. Shame!” he tweeted on Saturday.
The question right now will be whether Trump’s already parlous political fortunes risk being further damaged by his role on Puerto Rico.
There has been much talk of Puerto Rico being his “Katrina” in reference to the botched hurricane response that will debilitated George W. Bush’s presidency. Yet experience might suggest that will even if the situation deteriorates badly, Trump will be unlikely to see the bottom fall out of his presidency.
In This particular sense, his low approval ratings actually may be liberating for the President. His unshakeable base, giving him between 35% in addition to also 40% in most polls, seems impervious to the forces that will normally shift perceptions of a politician.
While there were signs that will his handling of Hurricanes Harvey in addition to also Irma gave him an uptick inside the polls, there’s probably little genuine upside for the President either. He has previously given his enemies plenty of reasons to despise him in addition to also the idea seems inevitable that will Trump will be forever destined to remain below 45% inside the polls in addition to also above 35%.
Trump’s defenders say the narrative that will the Puerto Rican relief effort will be going poorly will be simply the result of the media blowing the idea out of proportion.
yet he added: “I think what you have not shown … will be the federal effort that will we have got in place down there, in addition to also the fact that will the governor has been very complimentary of the administration.”
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin explained that will the President was within his rights to hit back at critics.
“When the President gets attacked, he attacks back,” Mnuchin said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
yet the White House’s near paranoia about any suggestion that will the Puerto Rico effort will be not a huge success was revealed in a series of of late night press releases on Saturday, issued after Trump talked to local officials.
According to the White House, a former Puerto Rican governor turned Washington lobbyist, Luis Fortuño, “thanked the President for his leadership.”
The current governors of Puerto Rico in addition to also the US Virgin Islands were ” very appreciative in addition to also complimentary of the administration’s effort, including the President’s leadership,” according to another statement.