Donald Trump delivered an address to West Point Academy graduates on Saturday, hoping to use the military to prop up his failing presidency, but it was a complete flop as he only reminded everyone watching just how weak he is.
The president stuck closely to the teleprompter, slowly delivering each word without the emotion or passion he reserves for peaceful protesters and cable news hosts.
Trump still hasn’t totally figured out how to drink water pic.twitter.com/IO8CDXmD9i
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) June 13, 2020
In the few moments he did go off script in an attempt to get a laugh or applause, Trump failed miserably.
“Tomorrow, America will celebrate a very important anniversary — the 245th birthday of the US Army. Unrelated, it’s going to be my birthday also. I don’t know if that happened by accident.” #BoneSpurs pic.twitter.com/KDlfxePPeE
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) June 13, 2020
Donald Trump likes to reserve the term “sleepy” for his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, but his speech to West Point cadets showed that maybe the president, not Biden, deserves the moniker.
Trump was again trying to use the military as a political prop
Just before Trump took the stage to deliver his remarks, retired Col. Jack Jacobs, a Medal of Honor recipient, blasted the president for using the military academy as a political prop.
“There’s no point in having a situation like this solely for the purpose of giving the president an opportunity to be in front of the cameras,” he said. “It raises the question of whether or not this is actually just an opportunity, a situation in which the military is there to support a political end of the president.”
Col. Jack Jacobs on Trump’s West Point address: “There’s no point in having a situation like this solely for the purpose of giving the president an opportunity to be in front of the cameras.” #ctl #p2 pic.twitter.com/cqyeeZzk6R
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) June 13, 2020
Col. Jacobs said:
The chief of staff of the Army, through the chain of command, works for the president of the United States. And if the president of the United States decides that this is going to happen, then this is going to happen. And the only way to avoid it — well, there’s no way to avoid it. The people in the chain of command below the president can decide that they’re not going to follow the order and can resign. That didn’t happen in this case because both the Army and the military academy figured that it could reduce, through its actions, could reduce the threat. Nevertheless, there’s no point in having a situation like this solely for the purpose of giving the president an opportunity to be in front of the cameras. That’s something else entirely. And it raises the question of whether or not this is actually just an opportunity, a situation in which the military is there to support a political end of the president.
This is all Trump has left
In recent weeks, as one crisis after another hits Trump’s desk – from the coronavirus outbreak to the economic collapse to the protests following George Floyd’s death – the president has spiraled out of control.
This moment in American history is simply too big for such a small man to handle, and polling shows that voters are ready to replace him in November.
So using his power as commander-in-chief to force the U.S. military to be his personal political prop and make him look like a strongman – it’s all Trump has left.
The American people saw it on the streets of the nation’s capital as Trump gassed protesters so he could hold a church photo op, and it was on full display Saturday as the president used the backdrop of a West Point commencement to boost his reelection campaign.
Donald Trump is a weak leader relying on strong men and women in the U.S. military to prop him up during a time of crisis.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.