In an unusually harsh piece in the Wall Street Journal published Tuesday night, the conservative paper equated Donald Trump's obsession with the idea that he was wiretapped by ex-President Barack Obama to a drunk with "an empty gin bottle."
According to the Journal, Trump is in danger of becoming a "Fake president," due to his promotion of what turns out to be "fake news," seriously damaging his credibility.
"If President Trump announces that North Korea launched a missile that landed within 100 miles of Hawaii, would most Americans believe him? Would the rest of the world?" the editorial begins. "We’re not sure, which speaks to the damage that Mr. Trump is doing to his Presidency with his seemingly endless stream of exaggerations, evidence-free accusations, implausible denials and other falsehoods."
Noting the president's failure to admit that he has no evidence of wiretapping, the Journal goes on to say that, not only is he destroying his credibility, but the credibility of his spokes people.
"Yet the President clings to his assertion like a drunk to an empty gin bottle, rolling out his press spokesman to make more dubious claims. Sean Spicer—who doesn’t deserve this treatment—was dispatched last week to repeat an assertion by a Fox News commentator that perhaps the Obama Administration had subcontracted the wiretap to British intelligence."
Looking back at the 2016 presidential campaign, the piece notes that no one who saw Trump during the 2016 campaign should be surprised.
"All of this continues the pattern from the campaign that Mr. Trump is his own worst political enemy. He survived his many false claims as a candidate because his core supporters treated it as mere hyperbole and his opponent was untrustworthy Hillary Clinton," it continues. "But now he’s President, and he needs support beyond the Breitbart cheering section that will excuse anything. As he is learning with the health-care bill, Mr. Trump needs partners in his own party to pass his agenda. He also needs friends abroad who are willing to trust him when he asks for support, not least in a crisis."
"Two months into his Presidency, Gallup has Mr. Trump’s approval rating at 39%. No doubt Mr. Trump considers that fake news, but if he doesn’t show more respect for the truth most Americans may conclude he’s a fake President," it concludes.
You can read the whole thing here.