Quite the interview from CNN posted a short while ago, letting an obvious exasperated Rep. Mike Coffman of Colorado go off on President Donald Trump this afternoon in Washington after the biggest week of crisis of Trump’s short time in office:
In an animated interview in the Speaker’s lobby Friday afternoon, Rep. Mike Coffman, a Republican from Colorado who will face a tough re-election in a swing district in 2018, described what he believed was “chaos” at the White House, saying the week had “started off horribly” and been “incredibly stressful.”
“It’s not a question of what the President can do. It’s a question of what the President can stop doing. He’s not been able to make the pivot. He’s not made the pivot between being a candidate and being the President,” Coffman said. “What he needs to do is be the President.”
“Stop this ridiculous tweeting,” he continued. “I’m a Marine Corps combat veteran on the House Armed Services Committee. We are nation at war, and what the men and women in uniform need to see is their commander and chief is focused on the fact that we are a nation at war and not in a Twitter war with Rosie O’Donnell.”
Coffman said that he feels some relief in the fact that a special counsel was appointed to handle the Russia investigation this week.
“If in fact this were left to the Congress, we couldn’t go on,” Coffman said alluding to the GOP trying to forge ahead with their agenda.
Coffman said that ultimately what the “American people need to see is a President that is not impulsive, a President that is not emotional, a President that is thoughtful and deliberative.”
Missing from Coffman’s pointed critique of President Trump’s behavior and responses to repeated crises is any criticism of the political agenda Trump has been trying to get accomplished–which would seem to be the result of Coffman’s expressed agreement with much of that agenda, confirming again today:
“I get it on the issues, [Pols emphasis] but that doesn’t mean he has to create such chaos in the White House and such confusion in the minds of the American people,” Coffman said.
So to be crystal clear about Coffman’s criticism of Trump: it’s not about the policy goals for Republicans, like repealing Obamacare or Trump’s stated next objective of tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. The problem for Coffman seems to be that all this endless scandal, and Trump’s self-immolating style of public relations via Twitter, is making it impossible to focus on the agenda.
To the constituents who have been dogging Coffman’s every step over exactly that agenda, at least as much as Trump’s daily scandal cycle, this “criticism” is not going to have the desired effect.