President-elect Donald Trump took to his Twitter account on Wednesday morning with a couple of direct shots at the Obama administration. The first was one in which he complained that President Obama was causing problems that were interfering with a “smooth” transition.
Doing my best to disregard the many inflammatory President O statements and roadblocks.Thought it was going to be a smooth transition – NOT!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 28, 2016
Trump’s second tweet was a continuation of his complaints about the recent UN Security Council vote on Israeli settlements. Trump has made it quite clear that he is at odds with President Obama over that vote. It is also well known that there has been some disagreement between the two about what Trump should and shouldn’t be doing as president-elect. So why did he decide to revisit both issues early on Wednesday morning?
One thing for certain about Donald Trump is that he is probably the most easily provoked public figure to come along in years. We also know there is no slight, real or perceived, that is too small for him to ignore. Wednesday morning’s tweets didn’t occur in a vacuum and what probably motivated them shows once again that we are about to get a president who is far too thin-skinned to hold the office.
And what is it that provoked Trump? About an hour before Trump’s temper tantrum, Gallup tweeted this:
— GallupNews (@GallupNews) December 28, 2016
It can’t be said with absolute certainty that Trump was responding to the fact that the president had just beaten him out as Gallup’s most admired man in America. Let’s just say, given Trump’s history, there is a strong probability of a connection.
Trump should be happy. His 15 percent showing is the best he has ever done in that poll. And he was only seven points behind Obama this time. A year ago Trump only managed five percent support. The president won that poll, too, receiving the votes of 17 percent of respondents. Obama has been the winner for the past nine years in a row.
If Trump actually took the time to look into the poll results, he would see that it is tremendously difficult for a president-elect to win over the sitting president. In fact, Obama and Dwight Eisenhower were the only presidents-elect to accomplish that feat. Of course, the fact that Obama did achieve that recognition, and he didn’t, would probably rankle Trump even more.
You have to give Trump a little credit this time. He didn’t attack Gallup, or call their poll “sad.” He was actually nuanced enough to make you wonder for a minute whether his tweets had any connection at all to the Gallup poll. But hey, this is Donald Trump we’re talking about. Is there anyone who seriously believes he would let being bested by President Obama go without a petulant Twitter response?