NBC News: Donald Trump Will Claim Success Without Needing to be Successful

NBC’s Katy Tur, who garnered so much negative attention from Donald Trump during the presidential campaign, tweeted this morning that “Trump will claim success without needing to be successful.”

As Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Carrie Dann wrote this morning, “Sunday summed up what a Trump presidency will probably look like after the inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017.” And it isn’t pretty.

After a day that saw a Trump tweetstorm mocking Jill Stein, a rogue Kellyanne Conway “knifing” Trump’s choice for Secretary of State, and Trump’s false claim about millions of people voting illegally, their conclusion was:

“So there’s your Trump presidency in a nutshell. Thin-skinned rants. Feuding aides. Conspiracy theories. And all a distraction from the bigger issues out there.”

The three journalists argue that the effect will be to delegitimize both the media and democracy:

There’s one more consequence to the rants, feuds, and conspiracy theories: They end up delegitimizing the media — and the country’s democracy. Think about it: Every time Trump claims, without substantiation, that millions voted illegally, and every time the news media call him out for it, that only delegitimizes the media among Trump’s supporters. And then when the same media write and cover Trump’s conflicts of interests (or policy proposals or anything else), those same supporters won’t believe a word of it.

It is easy enough to see Tur’s point: Trump can say anything he wants, claim any success he wants, while doing absolutely nothing, or worse, claiming success while failing spectacularly, just as he claimed a popular vote win while losing badly.

As Tur warns, it should unsettle us. What will result is an administration with no accountability for its actions. George W. Bush’s signing statements claiming laws didn’t apply to him will give us the warm fuzzies in comparison to what we are about to see out of a Trump White House.

We will see the Bush administration’s creation of reality to suit the circumstances, and Karl Rove’s “math Republicans do,” and we will see them on steroids. It is doubtful even Paul Ryan’s highly developed reality avoidance will be able to keep up with Donald Trump’s ability to talk about anything but what matters.