White House insiders report that 3 top-level cabinet officials have used derogatory terms in describing Trump – words such as “idiot,” “dope,” moron” or a man with the intelligence of a “kindergartener.”
One has to wonder about the current state of affairs at the White House in the wake of recent revelations regarding Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigation, the ever-increasing likelihood that Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen is going to flip, the ongoing Stormy Daniels controversy, his ongoing trade-war, and news of chaos and dissent within the administration staff itself.
In the midst of all this drama NBC News reported in May 2018 that “White House Chief of Staff John Kelly has eroded morale in the West Wing in recent months with comments to aides that include insulting the president’s intelligence and casting himself as the savior of the country, according to eight current and former White House officials.”
The officials said Kelly portrays himself to Trump administration aides as the lone bulwark against catastrophe, curbing the erratic urges of a president who has a questionable grasp on policy issues and the functions of government. He has referred to Trump as “an idiot” multiple times to underscore his point, according to four officials who say they’ve witnessed the comments.
CNN reported that “Kelly personally denied calling President Donald Trump an ‘idiot’ in an afternoon conversation with the commander in chief, relaying nearly the same statement in his face-to-face talk with the President as the one he released publicly, according to an administration official.”
“I spend more time with the President than anyone else and we have an incredibly candid and strong relationship. He always knows where I stand and he and I both know this story is total BS,” Kelly said in a statement. “I am committed to the President, his agenda, and our country. This is another pathetic attempt to smear people close to President Trump and distract from the administration’s many successes.”
Trump posted his own denial, tweeting: “The Fake News is going crazy making up false stories and using only unnamed sources (who don’t exist). They are totally unhinged, and the great success of this Administration is making them do and say things that even they can’t believe they are saying. Truly bad people!”
The Fake News is going crazy making up false stories and using only unnamed sources (who don’t exist). They are totally unhinged, and the great success of this Administration is making them do and say things that even they can’t believe they are saying. Truly bad people!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 30, 2018
However, one has to wonder about the accuracy of the report considering the past history of high-ranking administration officials making similar remarks.
The March 13, 2018 ouster or Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State dominated the news cycle although his termination was little surprise to anyone considering the embattled relationship he was reported to have with Trump.
USA Today reported that the problems between the two went “back to last summer, according to an NBC News report, when Tillerson openly called the president a ‘moron’ after a July 20 Pentagon meeting with Cabinet officials and Trump’s own security team, the boiling point of tension that spilled over in following months. In a statement, Tillerson denied the report’s claim that he considered resigning around that time, but did not deny calling Trump a moron.”
“Many expected Tillerson to be one of the ‘adults in the room,’ helping Secretary of Defense James Mattis rein in some of Trump’s wildest ideas,” Vox News reported, however, “His attempts to play that role backfired — his ham-handed attempts to manage Trump alienated the president.”
Vox News reported in November 2017 that: “National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster unloaded about President Donald Trump at a private dinner in July, according to a report in BuzzFeed, referring to his boss as an ‘idiot,’ a ‘dope,’ and a man with the intelligence of a ‘kindergartener.'”
Continuing Vox reported that:
Chief of Staff John Kelly has taken it on himself to fill up Trump’s schedule for fear of him spending his free time learning “unfiltered and sometimes inaccurate information that can rile him up,” per the Los Angeles Times.
There’s more. CIA Director Mike Pompeo has cut huge amounts of text from intelligence briefings, resorting to “killer graphics” because that’s “the way that [Trump] can best understand the information we’re trying to communicate.” The aides who write the remaining text have resorted to stratagems like tweet-length summaries of major foreign policy issues and putting Trump’s name in briefings whenever possible to get him interested in reading.
“I call the president the two-minute man,” a source close to Trump told the Washington Post. “The president has patience for a half-page.”