The American presidency has always come with vast executive powers, but until Donald Trump much of that power has gone unused.
Are we seeing a new model of the presidency where the norms that had defined the office, and the country, go out the window?
CNN’s Don Lemon opened his show with an epic takedown of Trump and his family, who he said are “stomping all over the norms that have kept the government running for centuries.”
The discussion started off with the news that Trump has bullied the NFL into a policy change meant to enforce patriotic displays and that he brought his own lawyer, Emmett Flood, to a meeting with lawmakers in which sensitive intelligence about Russia was discussed.
He had guest Fareed Zakaria on to talk about the Trumps.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Zakaria.
Lemon compared Trump to the Obamas—classy, upstanding, ethical.
“This is completely different,” he said. “Just objectively if you look at this president and this president it seems to be a family of grifters who have gotten ahold of the executive offices and are using it for their own purposes.”
“My big fear is forget about what happens in the next few years. Will the next person that becomes president say I don’t have to release my tax returns? I don’t have to resign from my tax businesses, Trump didn’t. I don’t have to tell my lawyers to recuse themselves at various points?” Zakaria asked. “That kind of thing is not a one time blip, but we have a slow degradation of the norms and all of a sudden we’re not that different from Turkey down the road.”
Watch the segment below.