The Right Honorable Donald J. Trump Sunday called for the immediate resignation of President Barack Obama.
In a tweet, within hours of the horrific mass murder in Florida committed by ISIS-sympathizer Omar Mateen, Trump tweeted:
“Is President Obama going to finally mention the words radical Islamic terrorism? If he doesn’t he should immediately resign in disgrace!”
President Obama has not yet said whether he will comply with either of Trump’s demands to use the three-word phrase Trump prefers or to resign. To my knowledge, Obama has, so far, rudely, not responded to the choices Trump has offered him.
Only one U.S. president has ever resigned, and that was after it became clear that he, President Richard Nixon, was going to be impeached. For Obama to resign over a linguistic disagreement would lower the bar for presidential resignations.
Ironically, in embracing the demand for the particular phrase — “radical Islamic terrorism” — Trump is borrowing a page from the playbook of one of his fallen competitors for the Republican presidential nomination, Sen. Ted Cruz, who seldom gave a speech in which he did not mock Obama for Obama’s refusal to use the identical three-word phrase.
Trump formerly nicknamed Cruz “Lyin’ Ted,” but he now shows respect for Cruz by taking up the cause of demanding that Obama adopt Cruz’s preferred usage. Obama, by the way, prefers the two-word phrase “violent extremists.”
I have written before about Cruz’s devotion to the importance of the three-word phrase in question, but perhaps now that Trump has picked up the baton, he will do what Cruz never did and explain exactly how the problem represented would be solved or improved in any way by a change in presidential terminology.