It’s become increasingly clear in recent weeks that the so-called adults that were in the room are truly, truly gone. The influence of people like John Kelly and Jim Mattis seems to have vanished, and with nobody around to tell Trump, “No, that’s is not a good idea, don’t do that” (for instance, about shutting down the government), we are now seeing a low-budget reality-show president emerge.
To date, there has been no clearer example than the embarrassing show Trump put on last night when he hosted the Clemson Tigers football team, who just won the national championship after a historic undefeated season, becoming the first Division I team in 121 years to win 15 games in a season. How did Trump reward the team? With much of the White House staff on furlough, he had to cater in for the event. He also couldn’t get the taxpayers to pick up the bill during his government shutdown, so “billionaire” Trump dug into his own pockets and hit the $2 menus of Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Burger King, and Domino’s. And then he stood before a table of cold Big Macs and “many, many” cold fries and repeatedly bragged before the gathered press that he’d paid for it all out of his own pocket. Go on, big spender!
Let’s set aside for the moment that feeding top-level student athletes at Division I universities has turned into serious business. Take for instance Clemson University, where they have private dining facilities and an “executive performance chef” whose sole job is to make sure players don’t eat the kind of junk food Trump offered them last night. Earlier this year, the University of Alabama opened a $15 million dining facility for student athletes. The University of Kentucky has a chef on hand for the basketball team! And Trump went with cold Filet-o-Fish and chicken nuggets.
Needless to say, the entire event was rightly and swiftly mocked for the rest of the night. Here are some of the highlights that had us howling last night. Please add your own in the comments.
Case in point.
The usually prolific social media accounts of these fast-food companies were eerily quiet.
Former Congressman John Dingell nailed it, as usual.
And of course we can never forget that Donald Trump himself owns a steak house that is just a stone’s throw away from the White House.
No joke! It’s 0.7 miles from the north entrance of the White House. About half that from the south side!
And, as is the case with nearly everything that comes out of his mouth, before the event was over, Trump had begun lying about the number of hamburgers he’d purchased.
As the players lined up for their cold hamburgers, one player can be heard saying, “I thought it was a joke.”
Congrats, Clemson? At least y’all will never forget it.