Honestly, I don’t know if President Trump was consciously baiting the media, or if the words that are generating pompous outrage were spontaneously and unselfconsciously expressed. Probably the latter, not that it matters, because Trump has found his groove, and it is working for him.
He said something to Jonathan Karl of ABC News that no other president would ever say: “When I can, I tell the truth.”
This is the most honest response to the question that could be made. Everyone except children understands that presidents can and do lie to us. I was an adolescent when the United States lied to the United Nations and the world, denying that the Soviet claim to have shot down an American spy plane was true. Subsequently, the Soviets put on display Francis Gary Powers, the pilot of the U2 plane (the very existence of which had been a secret, owing to its ultra-high altitude capabilities and long range), exposing a blatant lie told by a government. At the time, it was a huge shock that our federal government, including a president, would lie to us.
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