After a speech that people of all political stripes have hailed as a triumph, President Donald Trump, who is never one to pass up a chance to brag or speak out, has taken an unusual tack – he has remained quiet.
On Wednesday, as pundits, anchors, and regular people across the country were parsing and analyzing Trump’s speech, the president simply tweeted:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 1, 2017
At the time of this writing, he has only tweeted once since, and he has maintained a relatively low profile as the positive reviews of his speech have come in.
The president, according to several people who spoke to him, was quite pleased after weeks of displeasure over his news coverage and unexpected frustrations as he settles into the White House. A president who obsesses over his news clippings, he liked the television coverage and didn’t grow angry at the post-speech articles — a rare occurrence since he moved to Washington. He called friends and associates to ask what they’d heard, while recounting praise others had given him about the speech.
Staff told Trump people were saying good things. And the famously fidgety president, never shy about touting public measures of his success, opted not to tweet about positive overnight reviews from pollsters, focus groups and the mainstream media he so often maligns. He still wanted to talk about his performance, but was content to enjoy the praise privately.
Insiders within the administration appear to be happy – or relieved – to bask in a positive news cycle. One staffer said, “It seemed like they were taking a breath. They seemed like they were doing OK. They were smiling.” There are even talks of delays to some executive orders in light of the president’s performance on Tuesday night.
“They made a conscious decision to do absolutely nothing today to step on the positive coverage the speech is generating,” said a Republican who visited the White House on Wednesday. “They feel like they need a bump more than the country needs the new executive order, and in reality, that’s probably true.”
The administration is hoping the good buzz and relaxed atmosphere will hang on through the end of the week. And who knows? It could be the start of a whole new era for the Trump White House, although, knowing the press like we do, we shouldn’t hold our breaths.