"President-elect Donald Trump said he hadn’t heard of instances of intimidation of Latinos, Muslims and other groups by his supporters since the Nov. 8 election, was “saddened” to learn of them, and urged his fans to “stop it.”
“I am very surprised to hear that – I hate to hear that,” Trump said in an interview with CBS’s “60 Minutes” conducted on Friday at Trump Tower in New York and broadcast on Sunday. “I would say don’t do it, that’s terrible, because I’m going to bring this country together.”
“I will say right to the cameras: Stop it,” Trump added."
It’s really strange. His staff picks suggest he’s going way conservative but all these statements saying “well, maybe a fence instead of a wall, maybe only some muslims, maybe only some of Obamacare.” It sure is confusing.
The staff picks are more telling, I suspect.
However, for voters who had no problem voting for someone who claims “I never said that,” when there are videos and tweets of him saying exactly that, it should not be shocking to hear all these positions changing around. (That said, lots of politicians discover upon reaching office that lots of their positions have to be modified or put on the back back back burner).
Still, I would rather him say right now, “don’t fight” than “let’s tear this mofo down!”. People will forget all the bad things he said during the campaign within a year if he maintains a normal rhetorical stance going forward.
His staff picks show two things: 1) Rewards to people who supported him during the campaign; I doubt he cares much for the likes of Chris Christie who assaulted him during the primaries, but the governor was ultimately there when Trump needed him, and 2) Alignment with the divisions of the Republican party that he needs to pass anything in his agenda.
Trump needs support from the main GOP body, as well as the Tea Party fringe. So, he has chosen mainstream Republicans for his most important positions (VP, Chief of Staff), and some token representatives from the extreme right. Everything he has said or done since Tuesday has been logical and practical - like a businessman trying to accomplish tasks, rather than a politician handing out rewards based on party seniority. The incoherent, rambling creature we saw in the debates has vanished. Perhaps this is the true Trump.
What he does now and in the near future is more important when what he said in the campaign. At the moment, he shows every intention of acting on his campaign ideologies, and approaching upcoming tasks in a pragmatic manner. This might anger some people who oppose Trump’s agenda, but should be encouraging to people who believe that some of his reforms will be beneficial.
Not so strange. When O came to power, despite all the talk of change, he appointed Clintonites and DC vets. Inexperienced Presidents need veteran handlers. CoS is supposed to be a power broker, and Priebus is the natural pick.