Make No Mistake, a Trump Administration Will Have an Enemies List

This is what I expected, and anyone who paid attention to Trump’s nasty, spiteful rhetoric through the primaries should have expected it, as well.

For a “Republican,” he always seemed to reserve his most pointed ire for other Republicans. Democrats… not so much.

Donald Trump is a petty, vindictive, thin-skinned man, and he surrounds himself with the same kind of disreputable characters. With that in mind, no one who stood against him during the run up to the election should expect to be treated as anything more than conquered foes.

He did not win the seat of an elected representative.

He ascended to a throne, and there will be a price to pay.

Since Trump’s shocking upset victory in Tuesday’s presidential election, several people who worked on his team have discussed ways to punish Republicans who were hostile to the New York billionaire’s anti-establishment campaign, including blocking them from administration or transition posts, or lucrative consulting work, according to a handful of people involved in the conversations.

They say that Republicans who opposed — or were seen as insufficiently supportive of — Trump have had their entreaties rejected by people around the president-elect, some of whom have expressed wonderment that former bitter critics are now asking for jobs, lobbying leads and even Inauguration tickets.

Again, they should have expected it. Even if this is a case of those people sucking it up and reaching out, offering their help and support, there is no shade of graciousness within the Trump camp.

“My phone is ringing off the hook with people who were on the outs asking how they can get into Trump world,” said one operative who worked with Trump’s campaign. “I’m telling them there is no f—ing way they’re getting inside.”

Trump world?

Well, at least we know what our country’s new name will be.

And the website seen as the unofficial news organ of Trump World, Breitbart News — which was co-founded by Trump’s campaign chairman and possible White House chief of staff Steve Bannon — has signaled that it intends to continue its crusade against House Speaker Paul Ryan. Trump clashed throughout the campaign with Ryan, whose support for Trump wavered between nonexistent and tepid, though the president-elect and House speaker have presented a united front since the election, praising one another after a Thursday meeting on Capitol Hill.

So Breitbart will continue to be a toilet full of click bait nonsense and Trump propaganda. Got it. Andrew Breitbart’s legacy in rot.

Trump’s circle claim that not everyone who opposed Trump will be shut out. I assume they’re taking it on a case-by-case basis.

They expressed that some who stumped for Trump’s opponents during the primaries, and even some who were occasionally critical would be considered for some sort of amnesty deal in Trump World, but that for those who “went too far,” no dice.

The source suggested that Trump’s political operation would steer business away from Republicans who were involved in the #NeverTrump effort to block Trump from the GOP nomination. Comparing one of the effort’s leading operatives to a Hollywood actor who threatened to leave the country if Trump was elected, the source said, “Katie Packer should see if Bryan Cranston has an extra room in Canada.”

Packer responded by cracking that she “fully expected to be rounded up and sent to a detention camp, so if that’s the best they’ve got, then that’s a relief!” More seriously, she suggested that “if Trump allows sentiments like that to go unchecked,” it will undermine his claim during his victory speech early Wednesday that he wants to unite the country after the divisive election.

In other words, Trump’s words of healing the divide were just that – words.

And he’s got the best words, right?

Meanwhile, he’s surrounded himself with a ragtag group of devotees, like most dictators tend to do, and while some have a level of political pedigree, others are as clueless as he is. He will likely need the experience and knowledge of some of those his team have vowed to ostracize and destroy.

Trump is going to have to learn to behave with some measure of humility, in order to get anything done.

Some of Trump’s advisers have been urging him to cool his penchant for retaliation, and one told POLITICO he seems receptive.

But some of Trump’s closest confidants also are known for aggressively prosecuting their own rivalries. That includes Bannon, who in December 2015 emailed a Breitbart editor about working to oust Ryan from the speakership, as well as former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who is being discussed as a possible chairman of the Republican National Committee.

The facts are, Trump still has no idea what he’s doing, nor do many of those he is trusting to be his hands and feet in the game. What they do know is how to be nasty, and that is how everyone should look for a Trump administration to be run.

Even as his people are blowing off the idea that the Trump the world saw during the race is completely different than the Trump who will be president, it’s difficult to ignore that sour, sick feeling in the pit of our stomachs.

Talk about revenge began percolating among Trump supporters at his victory party on Tuesday night at the Midtown Manhattan Hilton. Former “Apprentice” contestant Omarosa Manigault, one of Trump’s leading surrogates, told a reporter for Independent Journal Review that Trump’s team was grateful that “our enemies are making themselves clear so that when we get in to the White House, we know where we stand.” She added: “Mr. Trump has a long memory and we’re keeping a list.”
And in recent days, a handful of operatives who worked for Trump suggested that any discrimination against prior opponents was fair game because during the campaign, Trump’s team members were the ones being called names (including “Trumptard”) and threatened with blacklisting by establishment Republicans.

I have actually heard that name, but prefer to use my own term, Branch Trumpidians, because I’m not suggesting there is anything wrong with the learning abilities of Trump’s acolytes. I’m suggesting they’re part of a cult.


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