by WorldTribune Staff, December 8, 2016
The Washington Examiner seems to be re-examining its disdain for Donald Trump.
On March 2, the conservative Washington Examiner published “An open letter to GOP politicians who might back Trump” in which it warned Republican officeholders to “think long and hard before jumping on the Donald Trump bandwagon.”
The “open letter” insisted “Trump’s nomination is likely to cost the party more than just the Senate, some governorships and some state legislatures. It could set the Republican Party back years, perhaps decades.”
The danger to GOP politicians was clear, the Examiner insisted: If you back Trump, “you will put your career at risk. And if Trump loses to Hillary Clinton, whether in a landslide, as current polls suggest, or at all, it will all have been for nothing.”
Fast forward to Dec. 7 – and in a piece titled “Is Donald Trump already the President?” – the Examiner’s Sarah Westwood couldn’t help but notice that, in the month since his election win, Trump has been “engaging in some distinctly presidential-style behavior, including engaging with businesses on behalf of the American people, conducting a bit of foreign policy, and delivering sweeping public addresses — all before he holds the authority of the presidency.”
The Dec. 7 piece went on to note that Trump’s “favorability ratings have hit new heights on the heels of several high-profile successes.”
Republican strategist Ford O’Connell told the Examiner: “I don’t think it’s normal for a president-elect to be out and about like this, but this is the era of Trump, and he is literally rewriting the rules.”
Columnist Michael Barone – whose pre-election pieces for the Examiner included “Trump might already be in free fall” and “Will Trump take down congressional Republicans?” – now seems excited that the Trump revolution is aimed squarely at deconstructing liberal policies.
On Dec. 7, Barone wrote: “It’s been a tough decade for the political left. Eight years ago a Time magazine cover portrayed Barack Obama as Franklin Roosevelt, complete with cigarette and holder and a cover line proclaiming ‘The New New Deal.’ A Newsweek cover announced ‘We Are All Socialists Now.’
“Now the cover story is different. Time has just announced, inevitably though a bit begrudgingly, that its Person of the Year for 2016 is Donald Trump.
“Trump’s victory means the left can’t jam its policies down on the whole nation — and gives it the incentive to develop policies acceptable not only to its own base but with voters among whom it fell agonizingly short this year.”
Grant Reeher, political science professor at Syracuse University, noted the “delicious irony” to Trump’s success even before he is sworn in.
“During the campaign, everyone wondered, some pleaded, when would Donald Trump start acting ‘presidential.’ Now that he’s doing so as a president-elect, there is concern.”