As CNN somberly waited for President Trump’s first address to congress, anchor Van “Whitelash” Jones lamented that this would be yet another off-the-rails speech by Trump – short on details, long on rage. He asked John King and other co-anchors if Trump supporters would dismiss his contradictory comments and make excuses for him like always, or if they’ll admit they may have misjudged him.
By the end of the evening Jones was singing a different tune, saying Trump became presidential in his first speech and suggesting he was even unifying. The CNN personality was impressed by Trump’s display of compassion during the emotional introduction and ensuing 2-minute standing ovation for Caryn Owens, the widow of slain Navy SEAL Senior Chief William “Ryan” Owens.
— CNN (@CNN) March 1, 2017
He became President of the United States in that moment. Period. There are a lot of people who have a lot of reason to be frustrated with him, to be fearful of him. But that was one of the most extraordinary moments you’ve ever seen in American politics. Period. And he did something extraordinary.
And for people who were hoping that he would become unifying, hoping that he might find some way to become presidential, they should be happy with that moment. For people who have been hoping that maybe he would remain a divisive cartoon, which he often finds a way to do, they should begin to become a little bit worried tonight. Because that thing you just saw him do, if he finds a way to do that over and over again, he’s going to be there for eight years.
Now there is a lot that he said in that speech that was counterfactual, that was not right, that I oppose and will oppose.
But he did something tonight that you cannot take away from him. He became President of the United States.
Jones received a lot of backlash and ridicule for this “whitelash” lash out on election night, but he is generally reasonably minded and capable of objective observation on occasion. He joins Fox’s Chris Wallace in noting that it was a very successful speech for Trump that signaled his official transition to President of the United States.
Jones is right. Democrats should be very worried about a composed Trump. The “utterly unhinged” narrative was the only thing Hillary Clinton had to run on and it’s been the only thing fueling the hysterical protest/outrage machine for the last 2 months. If Trump can keep his composure the air will be taken out of their only defense – emotion.
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