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Donald Trump just effectively killed Ronny Jackson's nomination

During his joint news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday, President Donald Trump wanted to m...

Posted: Apr 24, 2018 11:11 PM
Updated: Apr 24, 2018 11:11 PM

During his joint news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday, President Donald Trump wanted to make two things very clear in regard to his embattled Veteran Affairs nominee, Ronny Jackson:

  1. Jackson is a terrific guy, a great physician and everyone likes him and Trump is totally behind him.
  2. Jackson needs to step aside.

Notice anything strange about those two messages? Yes -- they are in total and complete contradiction! Congrats!

What Trump was trying to do in his news conference with Macron was to have his cake and eat it too.

On the one hand, Trump wants everyone to know he is 100% behind Jackson -- and that the only reason Jackson's nomination is foundering is because the Democrats on Capitol Hill are always and forever trying to score political points.

"He's an admiral, he's a great leader, and they question him for every little thing," said Trump.

Jackson's problems -- whistleblowers have made allegations to the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee regarding excessive drinking by Jackson and a negative work environment under his leadership, according to two former White House medical staff members -- have nothing to do with the fact that Trump picked Jackson literally out of the blue, without seriously vetting him or game-planning how a nomination fight might play out.

To admit that would mean Trump made a bad choice, an error in judgment. And Trump doesn't do admitting errors.

At the same time, Trump seems to want Jackson gone. Sooner rather than later. And he wanted to make sure Jackson got that message loud and clear.

"I told Admiral Jackson just a little while ago, what do you need this for?" Trump said of his conversation with the White House physician. "This is a vicious group of people, they malign ... what do you need it for?"

In case there was still any doubt about what path Trump wants Jackson to take, the President noted that "I don't want to put a man through a process like this. It's too ugly and too disgusting. ... If I were him, I wouldn't do it."

Put yourself in Jackson's shoes. Your hiring has run into some major hurdles regarding your last job. Your new boss makes a public statement that if he were you, he would step aside. What do you think you would take from that? Right.

Trump did everything but hold Jackson's hand as he wrote the letter announcing that he doesn't want to be a distraction to a President and a country he believes deeply in -- and all that.

This was Trump giving Jackson -- and himself -- an out. Jackson can now bow out somewhat gracefully, saying the political partisanship exhibited by Democrats was simply not something he was willing to put his family through. Trump can graciously accept Jackson's decision -- seizing on those terrible Democrats who won't let a "fine man" like Dr. Jackson serve.

That, of course, isn't the real story here. What will almost certainly end Jackson's nomination is not Democrats but Republicans who were initially skeptical of Trump's surprise nomination of the White House physician to run the VA and who only grew more openly suspicious once these allegations about Jackson's past conduct came to light.

The takeaway is that Trump's lack of concern with vetting, coupled with his desire to surround himself with people he likes, leads to situations like this one with Jackson. And that's nobody's fault but Trump's.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 751242

Reported Deaths: 13795
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1032931788
Lake556911009
Allen41692692
St. Joseph36990565
Hamilton36588417
Elkhart29398461
Tippecanoe22901226
Vanderburgh22556400
Porter19356325
Johnson18471389
Hendricks17682317
Clark13226195
Madison13149344
Vigo12614253
LaPorte12419221
Monroe12207176
Delaware10966198
Howard10321225
Kosciusko9630121
Hancock8576146
Bartholomew8169157
Warrick7860156
Floyd7811180
Grant7242179
Wayne7162201
Boone6966103
Morgan6761141
Dubois6218118
Marshall6209116
Cass6016110
Henry5900110
Dearborn589878
Noble581488
Jackson509076
Shelby501496
Lawrence4742122
Gibson444894
Clinton442355
Harrison441875
DeKalb439885
Montgomery438090
Whitley406543
Huntington402681
Steuben400159
Miami395269
Jasper388054
Knox375991
Putnam372960
Wabash361983
Ripley347170
Adams345555
Jefferson335886
White331953
Daviess3033100
Wells295281
Decatur289992
Greene286885
Fayette284864
Posey273835
LaGrange273072
Scott270156
Clay267148
Washington246036
Randolph244783
Jennings235349
Spencer234531
Starke228058
Fountain220948
Sullivan214643
Owen211858
Fulton202942
Jay200932
Carroll193620
Orange188255
Perry187237
Rush175926
Vermillion174844
Franklin170335
Tipton166246
Parke149416
Pike138234
Blackford136232
Pulaski120647
Newton113936
Brown104243
Crawford102516
Benton101714
Martin91715
Warren84015
Switzerland8148
Union72810
Ohio57911
Unassigned0420

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1108736

Reported Deaths: 20166
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1287201467
Cuyahoga1157922211
Hamilton813971250
Montgomery525481043
Summit484271001
Lucas43353820
Butler39013606
Stark33332929
Lorain25672505
Warren24591303
Mahoning22370603
Lake21207388
Clermont20117253
Delaware18852136
Licking16662222
Fairfield16574204
Trumbull16548482
Medina15610271
Greene15281248
Clark14237306
Wood13292200
Portage13251215
Allen11913239
Richland11605211
Miami10849225
Wayne9141223
Columbiana9032230
Muskingum8906135
Pickaway8663122
Tuscarawas8649250
Marion8642138
Erie8056165
Ashtabula7160179
Hancock6998132
Ross6944161
Geauga6838151
Scioto6534106
Belmont6157174
Union584549
Lawrence5731102
Jefferson5678158
Huron5546122
Sandusky5442126
Darke5420129
Seneca5348128
Washington5319109
Athens523960
Auglaize502187
Mercer487385
Shelby476895
Knox4571112
Madison444266
Ashland435797
Putnam4336103
Defiance432399
Fulton432074
Crawford4037110
Brown402461
Logan387677
Preble3855105
Clinton379166
Ottawa373681
Highland359665
Williams348278
Champaign344759
Guernsey324953
Jackson318254
Perry297350
Morrow291840
Fayette285450
Hardin275265
Henry273467
Holmes2701101
Coshocton269060
Van Wert247264
Adams243256
Pike242835
Gallia240650
Wyandot234556
Hocking220563
Carroll197348
Paulding176542
Meigs148440
Monroe136344
Noble136239
Harrison114138
Morgan109624
Vinton85517
Unassigned03
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