A few thoughts on Donald Trump and Ukraine

Take politics out of this for a minute: Of course the sitting President should encourage Ukraine to investigate a former Vice President if there is evidence of criminal activity. If Joe Biden abused his authority to halt an investigation into his son by sacking a prosecutor investigating his son, that is a serious problem and the American people deserve answers. Joe Biden is not above the law, and he is not immune to prosecution just because it might politically benefit Republicans.

Remember all of the calls for criminal prosecution of George W. Bush after Barack Obama took office? Many of the same people who are furious with Trump for wanting to look into Joe Biden were calling for Obama to do the same to Bush. If it is bad for the President to use his authority to go after political rivals, it is just as bad for Obama to do it as it is for Trump. The partisan hypocrisy never ends, which makes it impossible to believe these arguments about Trump’s alleged corruption are being made in good faith.

Assuming no actual corruption took place in the call between Donald Trump and the President of Ukraine, and assuming that Trump was legitimately concerned about corruption, there is still a significant problem here for Republicans generally and Trump specifically: Trump has absolutely no discipline with his mouth.

Trump constantly bumbles into trouble because he cannot or will not control his mouth. He just blabs whatever is on his mind, when a more disciplined person would realize that just because you are thinking it does not mean you should say it. Even if there is no corrupt intent, a more disciplined person would realize that bringing up Joe Biden’s name is really stupid and is going to create an appearance of impropriety. He could have easily avoided this entire scandal.

This is not even being presidential. This is basic professionalism.

This is not going to stop, of course. Trump is who he is. But Trump’s advisers still need to do their best to convince Trump to be more disciplined and professional. This means he should have a very specific agenda before calls like this, and stick to it, rather than wandering off to discuss whatever bee is in his bonnet this week.

Note: I posted this on Facebook a week ago.