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: 614946

Reported Deaths: 9807
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion849231342
Lake45784693
Allen33103560
Hamilton29752316
St. Joseph27572383
Elkhart24496346
Vanderburgh19679255
Tippecanoe18150144
Johnson15234296
Porter14970172
Hendricks14550253
Madison11071223
Clark10852145
Vigo10819185
Monroe9496115
Delaware9193136
LaPorte9173164
Howard8325148
Kosciusko811485
Warrick683399
Hancock6783106
Bartholomew6659100
Floyd6522113
Wayne6194164
Grant6050118
Dubois559081
Boone557968
Morgan551996
Henry512365
Marshall507884
Dearborn488745
Cass487864
Noble476159
Jackson428747
Shelby423381
Lawrence395180
Clinton375845
Gibson375560
Harrison354046
DeKalb351365
Montgomery349754
Knox337839
Miami325244
Steuben315846
Whitley313126
Wabash306951
Adams303636
Ripley301646
Putnam299152
Huntington295760
Jasper293035
White275943
Daviess271776
Jefferson267738
Decatur249983
Fayette249949
Greene242763
Posey241828
Wells237551
LaGrange230363
Scott227939
Clay225032
Randolph215848
Jennings200937
Spencer193622
Sullivan193633
Washington189023
Fountain185227
Starke177044
Jay168723
Owen168338
Fulton165430
Orange161035
Carroll160616
Rush156418
Perry156129
Vermillion150034
Franklin149933
Tipton134433
Parke13098
Pike118826
Blackford112023
Pulaski97937
Newton92621
Brown88835
Benton87110
Crawford8099
Martin75013
Warren6867
Switzerland6695
Union6297
Ohio4967
Unassigned0375

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 872918

Reported Deaths: 10856
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin102616707
Cuyahoga868931154
Hamilton65148455
Montgomery43662420
Summit35411766
Lucas31794634
Butler31451232
Stark26247445
Warren19939144
Lorain19378229
Mahoning17561339
Lake16350161
Clermont16235113
Delaware1463881
Licking13453142
Fairfield1301782
Trumbull12980317
Greene12226144
Medina11798169
Clark11094266
Wood10507158
Allen10031128
Portage9514111
Richland9275134
Miami927273
Marion7512113
Tuscarawas7455186
Columbiana7433124
Pickaway735250
Muskingum714042
Wayne7140172
Erie6253130
Ross5589100
Hancock556292
Scioto545365
Geauga518955
Darke474395
Lawrence464658
Union459130
Ashtabula457973
Sandusky440462
Huron435541
Mercer435590
Seneca435366
Auglaize425166
Belmont423948
Jefferson423969
Shelby422923
Washington396340
Athens38619
Putnam379276
Madison359930
Knox358423
Ashland349638
Fulton341744
Defiance336188
Crawford327274
Preble323637
Brown318821
Logan314835
Ottawa297443
Clinton293944
Highland282219
Williams282267
Jackson266145
Guernsey259326
Champaign254628
Fayette241030
Morrow23594
Perry235518
Holmes227274
Henry222954
Hardin217033
Coshocton208023
Van Wert204445
Gallia200126
Wyandot198151
Pike180918
Adams179815
Hocking174024
Carroll158216
Paulding145521
Noble121040
Meigs110324
Monroe103433
Harrison89821
Morgan84531
Vinton71714
Unassigned00
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