Donald Trump campaigned at least partially on a promise to “drain the swamp,” referring to a presumptive plan to end the rule of special interests and lobbyists in Washington. Of course, once he won office, he filled his cabinet with Wall Street bankers and appointed industry insiders to every federal agency he was able to.
Yet the influence of “special interests” in Donald Trump’s administration goes deeper than that. According to multiple reports, Trump spends his evenings on the phone, talking to various “friends.” Many of those friends are responsible for the leaks to the media Trump complains about, and many of them use their access to the White House occupant to push their agenda.
In fact, a new report suggests that opening Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge wasn’t even on Trump’s radar until a “friend” and industry insider suggested it to him. Even worse, it appears that he manipulated Trump into the decision, making the case that “Republicans have been trying to do this for years,” and if Trump is the one to do it—when Reagan couldn’t!—my, that would be impressive. Trump took the bait.
‘President Donald Trump said Thursday that he had little interest in opening Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling until a friend “who’s in that world and in that business” called and told him Republicans have been trying to do so for decades.
‘It was at that moment, it seems, that it became a competition.
‘“After that I said, ‘Oh, make sure that’s in the [tax] bill,’” Trump said during a speech at the GOP congressional retreat in West Virginia.
‘“I really didn’t care about it,” he added. “And then when I heard that everybody wanted it — for 40 years they’ve been trying to get it approved — I said, ‘Make sure you don’t lose ANWR.’”’
You can watch more here:
LIVE: President Trump speaks at annual GOP congressional retreat in West Virginia https://t.co/eqCQHuZsBR
— NBC News (@NBCNews) February 1, 2018
Destroying our national resources for short-term private gain is the Republican wet dream.
ANWR is the largest National Wildlife Refuge in the country, and has been a protected area for more than 50 years.
Destroying this priceless ecological gem so that Donald Trump’s rich buddies can leave their silver-spoon offspring with a few more billions is a travesty of the highest order.
What’s worse is that it shows how easily Donald Trump can be molded and cajoled into supporting any position. He’s extraordinarily manipulatable due to his thin skin and fragile ego. A few words of praise, the suggestion of more to come, and a hint that maybe, just maybe, those mean, nasty reporters will finally say something nice about him, and he’s yours.
Trump IS the swamp. There has never been a president in office that is as easily corrupted as Donald Trump. He refused to reveal his taxes, refused to divest in his businesses, and continues to profit from his own vacation days while in office—not to mention the many, many possible conflicts-of-interest arising from things like foreign dignitary visits to his properties, awarded government contracts, and favors to personal friends.
Featured image via Alex Wong/Getty Images