I have lost count of the number of times people who work for Donald Trump have “defended” him by saying, “Listen, he doesn’t mean these crazy things he says.” That’s not historically been something that has commended Presidential candidates to the embrace of the American public, when that’s the best thing you can say about your candidate.
That’s especially true of Trump, who has no governing record and whose word is basically the only thing we have to go on. And what we have learned about his word thus far is that it is not worth much, and that everything he says can (and often will) be taken back mere hours later, regardless of the topic.
So while this particular defense of Trump might or might not be true, it’s inevitable conclusion is that no one can actually know what Trump will really do if he is elected, since his own people actually defend him on the basis that he’s a serial liar and exaggerator. The latest iteration of this particular farce comes courtesy of Trump’s foreign policy advisor, retired Lt. Gen Michael Flynn:
Flynn also pushed back on the notion that a Trump administration would have the military kill terrorists’ families, before praising Trump for the type of people he surrounds himself with.
“We won’t see orders like that because he won’t give orders like that,” Flynn argued. “The other part about Donald Trump is — I think what he’s got a very good instinct on is the people that he chooses to have around him and allows to have this kind of debate to be able to come to the right decision.”
Two things. First, Trump said on national television during a debate that he absolutely would give orders like that. He was clear and unequivocal on the point. So he was either lying then or you’re lying now. I assume that Lt. General Flynn’s position is that the former is true.
The second is that the people Trump surrounds himself with include the barely literate and factually challenged Katrina Pierson, the under qualified and equally factually challenged Corey Lewandowski, alleged Russian mob fixer Paul Manafort, and incompetent Scott Walker castoff Rick Wiley, just to name a few. In fact, one of the main concerns about Trump is that he has habitually surrounded himself with people who are uniquely ill-suited to advise or work for someone who is actually running for President.