#THETRUMPDUMP: JUDICIAL OVERREACH OR TRUMP’S OVERREACH – AMISTAD LESSONS

US President Donald Trump thinks the US Judiciary is like that of the third world countries, a term that is derogatory and its use is not recommended. By doing so Donald Trump tries to stereotype a large section of the world as well as his own Judiciary, a marvel of humanity that is appreciated across the world.

Steven Spielberg’s 1997 film Amistad, based on the plight of African slaves on board ship Amistad in 1839, who were subject to intense court proceedings and social debate on slavery in America after they had mutinied and killed their captors, has two very moving scenes about independence and fine jurisprudence of the US Judicial system.

First, the then US President Martin Van Buren (1837-1841), under the pressure of pro-slavery southern US states and Spain, gets the judge of the US lower court replaced sensing that the presiding judge would rule against the slave traders and the US government, as the evidence demanded. Buren’s administration replaces him with a young judge expecting a favourable decision from him as the young judge would have his whole career before him and he would not go against the state. But, on the contrary, judicial wisdom and human conscience decides what the young judge would do – the just thing – and he rules against the slave traders and the US government – even if he knows that it will hurt his future career opportunities.

In the final scene of the film, we come across a fine closing argument in the case of the Amistad Africans in the US Supreme Court by John Quincy Adams, former US President (1825-1829) and the senior attorney here. Incidentally, under the pressure of the Southern states and Spain, the US government moves to the US Supreme Court. Though Adams never openly admitted that he was an abolitionist, he, in fact, was and agreed to defend the cause of the Amistad Africans in the US Supreme Court. As the film’s script goes, in support of his arguments, Adams reminds the judges of the US Supreme Court that the Queen of Spain, in official communication with the US, again and again, refers to the incompetent US Courts, comparing with the courts in her country that do what the state demands, something that Adams terms ‘as she plays with her own courts’ in a magical kingdom called Spain. Seven of the nine US Supreme Court judges were themselves southern slave owners. Adams invoked the US Declaration of Independence, freedom and equality of man and the previous US Presidents who fought for these values in his speech. The case was weak technically, apart from the ill-intent of the US administration. Add to it the impeccable defense mounted by John Quincy Adams. But a fear was lingering in everyone’s mind – that majority of the judges were slave masters – a fact that could have easily overturned the decision of the lower court in favour of the US administration and Spain. But like the lower court, the spirit of the US Judicial wisdom prevailed. With just one dissent, the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of the Amistad Africans.

That was 1840s. The film is more or less a true account of one of the most important episodes in the history that propelled the anti-slavery movement in the US to its final fight that resulted in Abraham Lincoln’s Thirteenth Amendment (January 31, 1865) that made slavery illegal thought the US, including the southern states.

Now if someone like a US President feels that the level of that judiciary, that showed a true judicial independence based on the rule of law some 200 years ago, is like of those countries where the judicial independence and integrity are easily compromised, then we can easily assume that the person saying such absurd things has other designs.

This Amistad spirit is alive and kicking in the US Judiciary is evident from the fact that both versions of Trump’s controversial travel ban, that target Muslims and immigrants, were turned down by the US Courts. Donald Trump was always livid over the US Judiciary. And the fact that he drew this the third world’ corollary during his campaign phase, before becoming the US President, tells us that he has designs against the US Judiciary. He would have been advised by his inner circle to pre-empt his moves and to take on the US Judiciary as the Judiciary was expected to play spoilsport in his bizarre policy moves like this travel ban travesty.

Though Donald Trump has said of moving to the US Supreme Court against the ban on his ‘travel ban’, hoping that the 5-4 conservative majority in the top US Court would help him with his Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch confirmed, the US Judicial history tells us otherwise, as evident from the Amistad example where six of the slave owing judges ruled against slavery. Neil Gorsuch and a conservative majority over the liberal judges may not work for Trump. Martin Van Buren says in Amistad, replying to the representative of Spain’s queen, that it is the it is the ‘independence of the US courts that keeps the people of the US free’.

©SantoshChaubey

DONALD TRUMP’S NEW TRAVEL BAN TOO IN COURT’S FIRING LINE

The article originally appeared on India Today.

A new travel ban is set to come into force from March 16, if it goes as intended, without the US courts pitching in. The new Donald Trump executive order was signed on Monday, March 6, after five weeks of the first futile attempt to ban immigration from some Muslim majority countries.

On its part, the Trump administration has gone for all cosmetic changes to its previous version of the executive order issued on January 27 that aimed to put a ban on people from seven Muslim majority countries so that it can evade the courts, like exemptions for green card holders permanent US residents and for those already having a US visa.

But the new travel ban order, that drops Iraq from its list and goes soft on Syrian refugees in terms of the language used, does talk of withholding new visas for 90 days to the people from the six countries, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan and Syria. The new executive order drops Iraq from the list as the Trump administration feels that the new vetting procedure of the prospective travellers adopted by the Iraqi government is promising enough to take care of the US security concerns.

But it seems these cosmetic measures are not enough to save even this new Trump dump from the judicial scrutiny. A federal judge in the US state of Hawaii has allowed the state’s amended petition challenging the new travel ban by the Trump administration. The state of Hawaii had filed a lawsuit against the first executive order on travel ban but a national injunction on the Trump’s travel ban by a Washington court had put an automatic hold on it.

In its amended lawsuit, the state of Hawaii has argued that the new executive order on travel ban doesn’t change much and violates the right to freedom of religion. Also, the state says in its lawsuit, that the travel ban would adversely affect the social fabric and economy of the state by targeting a religion and thus hindering people’s movements in its educational institutions and in the society as a whole, something that is against the US Constitution.

A Hawaii judge has accepted these contentions and is set to hear the lawsuit on March 15, before it comes into effect on March 16. The court has issued notice to the Trump administration to submit its response by March 13.

This Hawaii lawsuit may be the beginning of yet another round of court hearings that may again cloud the Trump administration’s divisive agenda to put a ban on people’s movement from some Muslim majority countries as some other states that had successfully challenged the earlier version of the executive order, including the state of Washington, have said that they are carefully reviewing the new executive order before deciding on their next step. The Hawaii court hearing may give them the reason they need to go ahead with their own lawsuits.

©SantoshChaubey

TIMES REPORT: TRUMP HITS BACK AT ‘RUSSIAN CONNECTION NON-SENSE’

US President Donald Trump has hit back on reports of his alleged Russia connection after the New York Times published an investigative report yesterday that claimed that Trump’s associates including his campaign officials were in constant touch with the Russian intelligence officials, something that the Trump team denies vehemently. In a series of Tweets, Trump has lashed out at his usual suspects, fake news media, Hillary Clinton and the US intelligence community, while praising those who sound plausible to his ears.

‏@realDonaldTrump
The fake news media is going crazy with their conspiracy theories and blind hatred. @MSNBC & @CNN are unwatchable. @foxandfriends is great!
5:10 PM – 15 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
This Russian connection non-sense is merely an attempt to cover-up the many mistakes made in Hillary Clinton’s losing campaign.
5:38 PM – 15 Feb 2017

@realDonaldTrump
Information is being illegally given to the failing @nytimes & @washingtonpost by the intelligence community (NSA and FBI?).Just like Russia
5:49 PM – 15 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
Thank you to Eli Lake of The Bloomberg View – “The NSA & FBI…should not interfere in our politics…and is” Very serious situation for USA
5:58 PM – 15 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
Crimea was TAKEN by Russia during the Obama Administration. Was Obama too soft on Russia?
6:12 PM – 15 Feb 2017

Everything that puts him in a negative hue is utter non-sense, a part of conspiracy theories to promote blind hatred. The real issue, according to Trump, is how the ‘classified information’ is being revealed by the intelligence community, that he terms illegal.

‏@realDonaldTrump
The real scandal here is that classified information is illegally given out by “intelligence” like candy. Very un-American!
6:43 PM – 15 Feb 2017

Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who worked for pro Russian leaders in Ukraine, too has termed the Times report as absurd. Russia, too, as expected has denied the claims made in the Times report.

The Times report is based on versions for former and serving US officials and refutes the Trump team claims that there were no direct contact between the Donald Trump camp and the Russian intelligence officials. The American intelligence has submitted reports that Russian indeed tried to help the Donald Trump campaign in the US Presidential polls but no one was named and no evidence of Trump’s complicity was found.

Ever since the report got out, it has created a furore. Brian Fallon, press secretary of Hillary Clinton’s campaign, has termed it a ‘colossal scandal’. Her campaign manager Robby Mook has tweeted to ask ‘why the FBI sent a letter about Clinton but not about this?’ Renowned CBS news anchor Dan Rather has gone a step ahead and said that Trump’s Russian connection may be a bigger scandal than Richard Nixon’s Watergate Scandal.

©SantoshChaubey

#THETRUMPDUMP FEB 10, 2017: ‘THE FAKE THAT NEVER FADES’..CONTINUES..OBVIOUSLY

‘What is fake, what is genuine’ can be matter of rhetoric, deception, subjectivity or logic based on which side of the fulcrum you are.

When it comes to politics, it is mostly about rhetoric, deception and subjectivity – all impregnated in different hues of relativities.

And when it comes to a politician like Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States of America, that also makes him the most powerful person on the Earth, it is always about extreme proportions of relativistic interpretations.

So, even if all the rational thinking souls, including some of the US judges (in fact all so far) think that the Trump administration’s a bad idea that would make the people of the US look fools before the world, Trump thinks otherwise.

And continuing his ‘otherwise’ stand, he is busy blasting the US Judiciary these days on his most preferred platform, Twitter.

While a crucial hearing on his travel ban was due in Virginia today, he, again, grandiosely, proclaimed that he would meet other in the court ‘to save his nation from some imminent threat’.

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump
SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!

Now it is ironical that the court, where he is looking for his saviour, is also the institution he so despises that he terms the whole US Judicial System as of ‘third-world countries’ and ‘rigged’.

But like it happens, apart from his dwindling support base, that has made him the US President to begin his term with historically low approval ratings, no one is buying his words, and that happened in the Virginia hearing as well.

According to media reports, the Virginia judge has ‘blasted Trump travel ban citing lack of evidence of any threats’, as a USA Today piece puts it. A Washington Post report, quoting the Virginia District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema, says that “the courts have been begging Trump to provide some evidence, and none has been forthcoming.”

“The presidential order, she said, “has all kinds of defects” and “clearly is overreaching” when it comes to long-term residents of the United States”, the Post report says. In fact, alluding to the freedom of religion, the judge goes on to question the motivation behind this ‘immigration ban’ decision saying that “there is some strong, colorful evidence that the motivations for this order may bump into the establishment clause of the First Amendment”, the report says. The First Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees the ‘Freedom of Religion’.

Trump’s travel ban order has seen some very tough, hostile reactions but this one, and that too from a federal judge, is the most stinging so far.

Trump has not tweeted (so far) on it. Let’s see how he reacts (or what he tweets)!

©SantoshChaubey

#THETRUMPDUMP FEB 9, 2017: FAKE THAT NEVER FADES

Trump is on his favourite targets, in fact one his favourite targets out of many, to populate the mircroblogging site with his wisdom.

Yes, it is about slamming the media again, with his pet ‘FAKE NEWS’ attribute.

He says since he won the Presidential polls, media outfits have run 16 fake stories, and he has based his proclamation on a proclamation by a media that he probably saw was not fake.

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump
’16 Fake News Stories Reporters Have Run Since Trump Won’

While he feels disgraced on being denied his full cabinet yet, he finds time for digging out information that even if Senator Richard Blumenthal never fought in Vietnam, Chris Cuomo, in interviewing him, never asked any question on this line.

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who never fought in Vietnam when he said for years he had (major lie), now misrepresents what Judge Gorsuch told him?
Chris Cuomo, in his interview with Sen. Blumenthal, never asked him about his long-term lie about his brave “service” in Vietnam. FAKE NEWS!

Meanwhile, in his trademark style, he doesn’t forget to remind people what surveys about his ‘grand travel ban’ executive order is saying. He says his supporters (or can we say people here?) are simply mesmerized at this ‘immigration ban’ decision.

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump
‘Immigration Ban Is One Of Trump’s Most Popular Orders So Far’

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump
‘Majority in Leading EU Nations Support Trump-Style Travel Ban’ – Poll of more than 10,000 people in 10 countries…

And yes, he also tweets a survey that places the ‘truthfulness’ of his administration above media – ‘Trump administration seen as more truthful than news media’ http://bit.ly/2k4b0imEmersonPoll …’

It is a Donald Trump world where anything that concerns him never fades, irrespective of what the world thinks.

©SantoshChaubey

WHY DONALD TRUMP IS TAKING ON US JUDICIARY

The article originally appeared on India Today.
Here it is bit modified and extended.

US President is disgusted and he letting the world known the root-cause of his anger, the US Judiciary, that has stayed the Trump administration’s controversial travel ban order on people from seven Muslim countries, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Sudan for 90 days. His order also suspended the US refugee programme for 120 days and put an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees.

Trump said he was doing so to prevent entry of terrorists in the US but it seems no one is buying that.

First, the New York District Judge on January 28 had partially stayed Trump’s executive order barring deportations already arrived on the US soil with a valid visa. Then on January 3, the Seattle District Judge, though temporary, put a complete, nationwide stay on the executive order.

How desperate is the Trump administration about its travel ban plans becomes evident from the fact that the US Justice Department approached the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals late in the night, after midnight, against the Seattle District Judge order. But even that court refused to grant Trump administration any immediate respite till the next hearing that is scheduled for today.

Meanwhile, protests again Trump’s executive order spreading nationwide and in many other countries and the number of protesters is swelling, including the corporate America, information-technology companies and some Republican senators like John McCain, Lindsey Graham and more importantly Mitch McConnell, the Majority Leader of the US Senate, who said that in case of an adverse court ruling, the Congress would not help Trump with his travel ban plans.

It has left Trump fuming and he has chosen his favourite platform Twitter to let the world know his anger and he began his onslaught with a ‘MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!’ tweet on February 4 that followed five more tweets on the issue on February 5 and two on February 6. He has continued with his agenda and today tweeted to say that ‘courts must act fast’ on his travel ban order and the day is not over yet. Also, Trump added today that he was ready to go to the Supreme Court to get his travel ban order implemented.

THE HIDDEN AGENDA?

According to a Washington Post report, the Trump administration has inherited 103 judicial vacancies in the federal and district courts from the Obama administration. It is almost double to what Barack Obama had got, 54 vacancies to fill judges of his choice.

What Barack Obama had inherited from his predecessor George Bush was a Republic legacy with majority of Republican nominated judges in 10 of 13 circuit courts as per a USA Today report. It took Barack Obama eight years to replace the Republican choices with Democratic nominees but his progress was halted midway in 2015 when the Republicans took the US Senate control. The Obama administration blamed the Senate Republicans for deliberately obstructing the process.

Nominating judges in the US courts has always been the prerogative of the US President and his party and so being majority of Democrat nominees or Republican nominees is a natural things and we should not look beyond that.

But the perception about Donald Trump changes that normal. The Washington Post report writes that ‘Trump has vowed to choose ideologues in the mold of the late Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia, a conservative icon — a prospect that has activists on the right giddy’. Antonin Scalia, a Ronald Reagan appointee to the US Supreme Court, was seen as a legal luminary but with a conservative mindset who vocally opposed gay rights and abortion.

Scalia’s death last year had given Obama an opportunity to tilt the 5-4 conservative majority in the US Supreme Court in favour of a 5-4 liberal majority but the Senate Republicans didn’t allow Obama’s nominee Merrick Garland.

And it seems Trump has started giving shape to his plans to reshape the US judiciary. On January 31, Trump nominated appellate judge Neil Gorsuch to fill Scalia’s vacancy. If confirmed, Gorsuch will again tilt the 5-4 majority in favour of the conservatives.

TRAVEL BAN A CHANCE?

The way Trump is criticising the US Judiciary on putting a stay on his travel ban executive order, it seems it can be the beginning of the process to rapidly fill the US Judiciary with more conservative judges who are likely to have a favourable view of Trump’s administration conservative policies like travel ban or stopping funds to the NGOs working for abortion.

Trump thinks the present US Judicial System is like ‘that of a third-world country’ and rigged, a CNN report says, “Folks, we’re living in a third-world country. This has never happened before. This is the lowest point in terms of our judicial system. This is the lowest point in the history of our country. Remember that. And when I talk about a rigged system, let’s see what happens. Let’s see what happens.”

His tweets say it all, his disdain for the US Judiciary. He finds the judges’ decision to put a stay on his executive order ridiculous. He is blaming them to make the US unsafe by allowing terrorists and dangerous people to pour in. It is as if denouncing all the systems that existed in the US before Trump who want to change it all. Probably, this is his way to initiate ‘making America great again’!

And a more ‘likeminded and amenable judiciary’ can be a great help here, especially when the US under Trump is going to see a flurry of lawsuits against Trump’s decisions that his rivals see as controversial. That is bound to happen as Trump’s victory has bitterly divided America and he took oath with historically low approval ratings amid nationwide protests.

Barring few, Republicans who control both Houses of the US Congress, have backed Trump’s travel ban and judges’ adverse views on it may propel them to have more likeminded, conservative judges in the judicial circuits. True that will take some time but then Trump is ready to move to the Supreme Court and he may expect a respite there with a 5-4 conservative majority once Neil Gorsuch is approved.

©SantoshChaubey

TRUMP VS JUDICIARY

US President is disgusted and he letting the world known the root-cause of his anger, the US Judiciary, that has stayed the Trump administration’s controversial travel ban order on people from seven Muslim countries, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Sudan for 90 days. His order also suspended the US refugee programme for 120 days and put an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees.

Trump said he was doing so to prevent entry of terrorists in the US but it seems no one is buying that.

First, the New York District Judge on January 28 had partially stayed Trump’s executive order barring deportations already arrived on the US soil with a valid visa. Then on January 3, the Seattle District Judge, though temporary, put a complete, nationwide stay on the executive order.

How desperate is the Trump administration about its travel ban plans becomes evident from the fact that the US Justice Department approached the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals late in the night, after midnight, against the Seattle District Judge order. But even that court refused to grant Trump administration any immediate respite.

So, now the law will take its own course. Both sides will be asked to present their sides and then the court will arrive at a decision, a decision, that again, can be challenged in higher courts. Meanwhile, protests again Trump’s executive order spreading nationwide and in many other countries and the number of protesters is swelling, including the corporate America and the Republican senators like John McCain, Lindsey Graham and more importantly Mitch McConnell, the Majority Leader of the US Senate, who said that in case of an adverse court ruling, the Congress would not help Trump with his travel ban plans.

It has left Trump fuming and he has chosen his favourite platform Twitter to let the world know his anger and he began his onslaught with a ‘MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!’ tweet on February 4 that followed five more tweets on the issue the next day and two more today and the day is not over yet.

‏@realDonaldTrump
I have instructed Homeland Security to check people coming into our country VERY CAREFULLY. The courts are making the job very difficult!
2:12 AM – 6 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
Just cannot believe a judge would put our country in such peril. If something happens blame him and court system. People pouring in. Bad!
2:09 AM – 6 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
The judge opens up our country to potential terrorists and others that do not have our best interests at heart. Bad people are very happy!
6:18 AM – 5 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
What is our country coming to when a judge can halt a Homeland Security travel ban and anyone, even with bad intentions, can come into U.S.?
2:14 AM – 5 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
Why aren’t the lawyers looking at and using the Federal Court decision in Boston, which is at conflict with ridiculous lift ban decision?
5:07 AM – 5 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
Because the ban was lifted by a judge, many very bad and dangerous people may be pouring into our country. A terrible decision
3:14 AM – 5 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
What is our country coming to when a judge can halt a Homeland Security travel ban and anyone, even with bad intentions, can come into U.S.?
2:14 AM – 5 Feb 2017

‏@realDonaldTrump
MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!
7:56 PM – 4 Feb 2017

His tweets say it all, his disdain for the US Judiciary. He finds the judges’ decision to put a stay on his executive order ridiculous. He is blaming them to make the US unsafe by allowing terrorists and dangerous people to pour in. It is as if denouncing all the systems that existed in the US before Trump who want to change it all.  Probably, this is his way to initiate ‘making America great again’!

©SantoshChaubey

#THETRUMPDUMP FEB 4, 2017: TRAVEL BAN BOOMERANGS

THE TRUMP DUMP

45th US President Donald Trump has begun on a wrong note now we can safely say that. And it seems his days ahead in the White House are going to be quite tumultuous for the US policymaking apparatus.

His predecessor Barack Obama had his fare share of controversies but he was widely loved and appreciated and now he looks a taller figure than he was before January 20, the day Donald Trump officially took over the US Presidency.

Much before the campaigning for this round of US Presidential Polls began, Donald Trump had established himself as some sort of ‘sworn enemy’ of Barack Obama with many controversies to his credit including the ‘birthir’ row that questioned Barack Obama’s US birth credentials.

Hillary Clinton was his rival candidate but his campaign also themed around Barack Obama with a high pitched anti-Obama rhetoric being an integral part of it.

In his typical Trump manners, Trump never felt shy in expressing his mind how he intended to undo most of the policies and initiatives taken by Barack Obama – be it Obamacare (US public healthcare policy under Obama) or Obama’s diplomatic initiatives or Obama tax policies or Obama’s refugee preferences or Obama’s stand on immigrants.

And on January 20, he began with a loud thud. So, all of Obama’s initiatives are going to see tough times, and with that, the systems in the US – with their checks and balances. Going by the US Presidential history, it’s been a long time since the last time when these checks and balances had a chance to prove their mettle.

And they proved their mettle. We all know what happened with Richard Nixon. Hope history will repeat itself. And signs look encouraging.

Like what is happening with the so-called travel ban imposed by Donald Trump that has been suspended by US courts!

Trump administration has issued a travel ban on citizens of seven Muslim nations – Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen – on the pretext of making the US homeland safer – when these countries form the maximum count of refugees in urgent need of humanitarian help – when there is no evidence that people from these countries have carried out any terror activity on the US soil.

So it is an outrageous decision. And people are rightly outraged at it, holding protests, marches, demonstrations, filing lawsuits. And the system is also responding to it. A judge had earlier barred deportation of people under this order and today another judge put a nationwide temporary stay on Trump’s bizarre diktat forcing the US State Department to revoke its cancellation of visas or restraining the Homeland Security Department to inflict harassing measures on innocent people.

And it seems just the beginning and ‘The Trump Dump’ is expected to swell in the days to come.

©SantoshChaubey

TRUMP’S TRYST WITH CONTROVERSIES CONTINUES EVEN AS HE ASSUMES PRESIDENCY

The article originally appeared on India Today.
Here it is bit modified and extended.

The controversial businessman and President-elect Donald Trump is US President now with the White House as his official and residential address for at least the next four years, a distinction that makes him unarguably the most powerful person on the Earth.

But true to his controversial past, his tryst with controversies has continued unabated and has, in fact, seen two major controversies in just two days after his inaugural on January 20, 2017.

Donald Trump has had a bad reputation when it comes to respecting women. He has made several gaudy, bitter in taste sexist remarks against women with women even accusing him of sexual assault. His reputation on this front is sullied to the extent that news outfits run even ‘Donald Trump sexism tracker’.

It was natural then that millions of women protested against Trump, not just in Washington but in many cities in America and across the world. According to an ABC news report, ‘more than than 600 rallies in 60 countries around the world’ were held. Reuters headlined the worldwide women protests as ‘unprecedented’. They were all there, mocking and denouncing the new US President, as the Reuters report put it.

But Donald Trump, in his trademark style, a hangover from his past, chose to berate women again. Tweeting from his personal Twitter handle (@realDonaldTrump), Trump mocked women protesters, “Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn’t these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly.” Though he later tweeted to say that even if didn’t agree, ‘he recognized the rights of people to express their views’, he left an impression that protests didn’t matter for him.

And it seems Trump has chosen people like him to represent his administration. After the inauguration ceremony, Trump’s Press Secretary Sean Spicer claimed that it was the most watched inauguration ever of any US President, a false claim that fell flat with contradictory figures. According to Nielsen data, Trump’s inauguration with 30.6 million eyeballs ranked behind Ronald Reagan (1981-41.8 million), Barack Obama (2009-37.7 million), Jimmy Carter (1977-34.1 million) and Richard Nixon (1973-33 million).

But Trump, in his familiar style, tried to belittle his predecessor Barack Obama again tweeting “Wow, television ratings just out: 31 million people watched the Inauguration, 11 million more than the very good ratings from 4 years ago!”. Clearly, he was trying to shield behind a selective set of information, picking up what suited his purpose.

Both Trump and his Press Secretary have slammed the media for being preferential and biased for showing truth behind the numbers. Trump thinks media is dishonest when it says that Barack Obama’s inaugural in 2009 had more people in attendance. Going a step further, his Press Secretary Spicer threatened to ‘hold the press accountable’ blaming that ‘some members of the media were engaged in deliberately false reporting’.

If it is the beginning, let’s see what happens next. If Trump and his administration can’t handle media coverage on his inauguration, imagine what would happen when it comes to media carrying in-depth policy analysis of Donald Trump’s stated priorities where he said he would go against the established norms, be it Obamacare repeal or nuclear proliferation and military expansion or climate change protocols or trade protectionism or the US intervention in the geopolitical affairs.

©SantoshChaubey