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Aloof vs. Accessible.

September 1, 2016

If there is one thing Donald Trump has had going for him since Day One, it’s his accessibility.

He has been available to every news outlet, even when he knew he was probably going to be skewered. So far as we know, he has never put reporters in a rope corral.

Making no bones about the fact that he wanted and needed to reach out to people that had expertise in the fields where he was inexperienced may have at times hurt his campaign, but he’s been reasonably quick to see when he was getting bad advice.

Certainly sending out questionnaires asking plain old people what they wanted him to focus on contrasts sharply with the “we know what’s best for the peanut gallery” approach of the Clinton camp.

Wednesday he did it again.

Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto extended an invitation to both Mr. Trump and Mrs. Clinton to visit with him about such things as a border wall.

Mr. Trump responded by taking a quick detour from prepping for his Arizona immigration speech on Wednesday night  and meeting with the Mexican President, not in some stuffy office in New York, but on the other man’s home turf.

Mrs. Clinton on the other hand somewhat imperiously noted that she would meet with President Peña Nieto “at the appropriate time”  and ridiculed Mr. Trump’s visit as “theatrics.”

Maybe so. Or maybe Mr. Trump was just raised to have better manners.

It couldn’t have been very convenient for Mr. Trump to just drop everything he had going on in Arizona prior to his immigration speech and jet down to Mexico.

And in all honesty, it’s doubtful that the meeting accomplished anything of lasting importance beyond letting each man observe the other in person, make declaratory statements and of course have the obligatory photo op.

Trump’s subsequent speech on immigration simply presented the same ten points he has been making since he started campaigning, albeit with a great deal more coherence than in the past.

It probably didn’t change many minds.

If you are pro-Trump you liked the speech.

If you are for Mrs. Clinton’s open border, no enforcement, sanctuary city policies you hated it.

Mexicans are not going to suddenly fall in love with Donald Trump just because he met with their President.

For Mr. Trump’s part, he’s still going to build the wall and deport criminal illegal immigrants.

So why does the Mexican visit even matter?

Maybe because he had enough respect for both Mexico and the United States to look President Peña Nieto in the eye and tell him so.

Maybe that’s not how diplomacy is done, but it’s kind of refreshing.

In a Clinton administration, any messaging regarding immigration would likely come from whomever assumes the Baghdad Bob role for her, assuming she finally decided that the timing was “appropriate.”

From → op-ed

  1. Since you are under the impression Trump is equally available to all news outlets, this might interest you. He has actually been banning and unbanning press organizations on a capricious basis for months:

  2. I’m aware of his intermittent bans on WaPo and other media, including at one point, Fox News. What I was trying to point out is that a lot of the free media he has received is because he didn’t refuse any contact at all with the press, as Mrs. Clinton has.

    For that reason, I think voters have had a much better opportunity to view the unvarnished Trump than they have the carefully stage-managed Clinton.

    The man may indeed be a complete jerk. But the only way the average person knows that is because he’s been out there to observe, warts and all.

    Although I am old enough to have followed her career for a long time, anyone under 30 or so probably only knows what they see on TV or read on Twitter. She’s no great prize either.

    If we are going to allow billions of dollars to be spent to elect a President (and you can bet there’s a story of its own in that), then it seems like we ought to be able to get a look at the whole candidate.

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