Buchanan: Media ‘Whined’ and ‘Moaned’ Over Trump’s Texas Visit
Conservative commentator says despite press loathing, the president was 'spirited' and 'uplifting'
Conservative political commentator Pat Buchanan said President Donald Trump was “spirited” and “uplifting” in his Tuesday visit to hurricane-ravaged Texas despite the media’s “whining and moaning” that Trump was “a soulless creature.” He spoke during an interview Wednesday on “The Laura Ingraham Show.”
Buchanan, a former senior adviser to President Reagan, noted that Trump decided to visit Texas in the middle of Tropical Storm Harvey to offer his support to local officials and first responders. But the media weren’t satisfied with Trump’s visit, and many outlets and pundits criticized the president for allegedly showing too little compassion and empathy for displaced Texans.
"They don't seem to like the president," he said of the media. "They loathe the man, and they simply are not going to find any reason to say something nice about him. So what they say is, in effect, 'We would have shown more compassion had it been us. We would have shown more warmth and caring. And he's a soulless creature.'"
"I thought [Trump] did very well. It was spirited, uplifting, 'Texas is going to be able to handle this,'" Buchanan added. "I mean, the president was fine from everything I saw, and the people were delighted with him. But we've got the 'Bah! Humbug!' crowd."
Noting that the mainstream media have "shown no empathy for our president," he said, "it is almost laughable to listen to them."
"It really is — the whining and the moaning," Buchanan said. "The president of the United States went to Texas. He made two stops down there, and the folks loved him. He's cheering them up. 'We're going to make this. We're going to do it together, and you're doing a great job down here.' And he comes and gets pounded."
The former Reagan adviser said "there's no doubt" that the battle between the president and the mainstream media in the aftermath of his Election Day victory "is really a war to the death, here."
"I think the American media, the U.S. press corps and everything, have really suffered what I would consider permanent damage," Buchanan said. "They're all waiting for Trump to fall or for Trump to be deposed. And they want him put into jail, some of them. It's almost visible."
"But this war to the death that's taking place, I think, is going to leave the press permanently damaged," he warned, noting that their obsession with tying Trump to the ongoing Russia election interference probe is a "fetish" for them.
In sharp contrast to the judgments of media pundits, Texas officials dealing with the Harvey crisis offered profuse praise for Trump and the federal government's handling of the crisis. A local Texan, identified as Rob, saw the president speak in Corpus Christi, Texas, on Tuesday and explained his experience during a Wednesday call-in to "The Laura Ingraham Show."
"What [the media] don't realize is that the gathering outside the firehouse was a spontaneous gathering because they didn't publish where [Trump] was going," Rob said. "So the people that were gathered there either saw the motorcade and figured out what was going on or were in one location and drove 15 or 20 minutes to be there. That's why it was a spontaneous gathering."
"Obviously [Trump's] purpose for going was not a publicity event. It was to meet with the local officials and the first responders," the caller added. "It felt ... like he put his arm around us. And we were all thrilled to see him. He had a big grin on his face when he saw the crowd outside. I don't think he was expecting a crowd because they didn't publicize where he was going."
"That's why it was an impromptu speech," Rob continued. "But that wasn't the focus of why he was there. It was to meet with the local officials and the first responders."
Buchanan noted that a number of developments have placed everything "on the line" for both Harvey victims and Americans as a whole. With Tropical Storm Harvey wreaking havoc on Texas, North Korea again escalating its saber-rattling, and with the Republican Party's key campaign promises still unkept, Buchanan said it is imperative that Congress get back to work.
"Everything's on the line. The American people — and especially the group of conservatives and moderates and populists that put these folks into power and gave them all this power — had really big hopes in January," Buchanan said. "And if those hopes aren't realized because [the GOP] couldn't get it all together or they've taken too many days off, there's going to be tremendous bitterness and disillusionment."
"And why would you let that happen when you've been given the franchise, been given the football, as it were? Move it down the field," he added.
Noting that Trump and the GOP-led Congress promised to repeal and replace Obamacare, deliver tax reform, and produce an infrastructure bill, Buchanan warned that there will be severe consequences in the 2018 midterm elections if those promises aren't met this year.
"If they come up at the end of the year and they've got no tax reform, and they've got no repeal and replacement of Obamacare, and they've got no infrastructure bill, and all these other things, people are going to say, why did we elect a Republican Congress in if they can't do any better than this? What's the sense of putting them back in?" he said.
"When is Congress coming back? Some time in October? Five weeks vacation? I've never had something like that in my life except when I'm unemployed," Buchanan added. "Get back here. Come back and show you're serious, you're working day and night, you've got your nose to the grindstone."