Donald Trump to President Obama: Say the magic words or resign

REUTERS/Brian Snyder
Donald Trump: “Is President Obama going to finally mention the words radical Islamic terrorism? If he doesn't he should immediately resign in disgrace!”

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.

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Comments (15)

  1. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 06/13/2016 - 04:01 pm.

    Because those words will magically smite down ISIS and the mentally-ill/evil-inclined people inspired by ISIS !?!

  2. Submitted by Curtis Loschy on 06/13/2016 - 04:28 pm.

    An answer for Trump

    There is a good three word answer for Trump, but President Obama would never express that in public. Vice President Biden would be happy to answer for him.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 06/13/2016 - 04:31 pm.

      Three Little Words

      I think I know the ones you mean. Didn’t Senator McGovern cause a stir for saying them to a particularly noisome heckler back in ’72?

  3. Submitted by Jim Million on 06/13/2016 - 06:32 pm.

    Disappointed Here Today

    For some reason I expected the response to Sunday’s events and reactions might be something more than this routine rhetoric with somewhat delusional Cruz subtext. Reads like a file piece.
    Yes, I am disappointed today.

  4. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/13/2016 - 06:44 pm.

    When has Trump

    ever explained anything exactly?

  5. Submitted by Joe Musich on 06/13/2016 - 08:36 pm.

    Trump shows his …

    compassion first as always ! Furthermore it seems he has not “deleted” his account as recommended. I will be maybe but probably not the first to reinterate the recommendation.

  6. Submitted by Tim Smith on 06/14/2016 - 09:11 am.

    The usual

    politics on both sides. Trump being his bombastic over the top self. The President and Mrs. Clinton playing identity politics and gun control angles without really having the guts to confront the real issue. Reminds me of the Megan Trainor song… It’s all about the base about the base……

    • Submitted by Roy Everson on 06/14/2016 - 01:51 pm.

      Over the line is not just ‘politics’

      Demanding that a sitting president resign his office for trivial reasons is a foolish, unserious message from a demogague, a threat to the democratic process; it’s over the line and further proof of his unfitness for office — that’s considerably different from opining about an issue, gun control.

  7. Submitted by Tom Christensen on 06/14/2016 - 09:47 am.

    The GOP doesn’t have any magic words

    The GOP doesn’t have a clue about what to do with Trump or with their party for that matter. How can the GOP look like a party that is in control, not tick off those who have voted for Trump, and put a viable candidate in his place? Trump is incapable of helping himself. Those who have voted for Trump hold many of the same beliefs that Trump does. That should scare every reasonable person. The tea party drove the moderate Republicans out of the party. This is what they now have, an embarrassment at the top of the GOP ticket and a total mess up and down the GOP ticket, made up of nothing but radicals.
    The GOP is not what we want running the country. Here we are with a worse possibility than the Bush/Cheney mess, the Trump mess. I hope America has learned enough to never want the Bush/Cheney type experience to ever happen again. Some have suggested we not say anything about Trump, just let him extinguish himself. People across this nation thought this would happen long ago. The ineffectual GOP can’t do anything about Trump so Trump is what the GOP will offer to the voters in November
    It is a very sad commentary on America that this is what the GOP has become. Ronald Reagan coined the saying, “Never speak ill of a fellow Republican.” Trump is the prime example why Reagan was wrong. Where is the RNC chairman? Hiding. Where is the Senate majority leader? Noncommittal. Where is the speaker of the house? Back peddling. Where are the GOP congressional members? Speaking incoherently in nervous tones, complaining they won’t have a chance in November.
    I guess the last, nearly eight years, have not worked out too well for the GOP. Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to drum the moderates out of the party. Maybe having only the answer of “no” wasn’t such a good idea. Maybe claiming everything President Obama did was unconstitutional, without any proof, wasn’t such a good idea. Maybe trying to repeal Obamacare over 60 times, without a replacement, wasn’t such a good idea. Thanks to the leader of the Republican Party, Trump, as well as McConnell, Boehner, Ryan, Hannity, Limbaugh, etc., etc. the GOP is what it is, an ineffectual mess unable to compete.

  8. Submitted by Dennis Litfin on 06/14/2016 - 12:01 pm.

    I did not expect

    a rerun of Trump’s tirade in this quality source. Trump is not news. Let the gawker-type publications feed his ego…..Mn. Post is beyond that.

  9. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/14/2016 - 02:50 pm.

    Like it or not

    what the Republican Party’s candidate for the office of President of the United States of America says is significant, however devoid of meaning.
    Ignoring him won’t make him go away, or persuade swing voters not to vote for him.
    It could happen here.

  10. Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 06/14/2016 - 09:09 pm.


    I tried to answer for Cruz and now can do it for Trump. I don’t see how it is not obvious, but “radical” in this definition applies to “Islamic” so the idea is to distinguish between radical Islam and other Muslims. It is also obvious that Obama’s unwillingness to connect terrorism and radical Islam is indeed “political correctness run amok” and has no “plausible and possibly helpful reason.” Imagine if FDR refused to use the term “German Nazis” in WWII… Most Muslims are as appalled by this terrorism as anyone else so they should not be complaining when people who by their own admission hijacked their peaceful religion are singled out. And finally, how would it help. Going back to WWII, imagine calling for fight against “some people who happened to live in Europe and who have some violent ideology and want to subdue the world and kill all the Jews.” Sounds strange? But that is what Obama and many on the left are doing. Under the above definition, a self-proclaimed Nazi would be free to do anything because he would not be a subject to additional attention by the government. And this is exactly what Cruz and Trump are talking about: political correctness that prevented an arrest of a potential terrorist which resulted and multiple deaths. So really it is all about accepting the facts and publicly acknowledging them thus allowing for a realistic policy to be implemented.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/15/2016 - 11:26 am.

      Some differences (beware the false analogy)

      FDR did not talk about “German Nazis; he usually simply said ‘Nazi’s’. Same was true of most Americans at that time (I was alive then).
      Also, many (at some times a majority) of Germans supported Hitler.
      On the other hand, most Muslims reject terrorism; many have done so publicly. Terrorists (‘radical terrorist’ is redundant) make up a small, if dangerous proportion of Muslims.
      And ‘potential’ is in practice meaningless. Everyone is to some extent a potential terrorist; we would need some way to precisely quantify ‘potential’, which we don’t have.

      Are you recommending going back to WWII when we put second and third generation people of Japanese descent into concentration camps? At that time we were in a legally declared war, and faced what might (to give the Japanese too much credit) an existential threat.
      Now we are dealing with criminal acts; far more killings are do to non-ideological motivations. Basing our actions on ideology (much less religion) is simply not productive.
      Too many false positives, resulting (as President Obama pointed out) in the creation of more terrorists.

      • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 06/15/2016 - 09:20 pm.


        So what is the equivalent for Nazis now so Obama may have a term to use? No one knows how many Germans supported Hitler; by that measure, everyone living under ISIS is “supporting” it because others are killed… And you missed my point where I said that radical is a modifier for Islamic, not for terrorist. So I did say that most Muslims reject terrorism so why would they be upset if “Radical Islamic Terrorists” are distinguished from them by this name? Doesn’t make sense… And of course, not everyone is potential terrorists but those who communicate with ISIS and express love for it are… and should be isolated – this is what I recommend. And that was not done to Major Hassan and to Sacramento killers because it was not politically correct to go after them. And what is creating more terrorists: identifying and killing them or showing our weakness? Are we trying to destroy them with compassion?

        • Submitted by Rachel Kahler on 06/16/2016 - 10:58 am.

          Words matter

          While I agree on the initial premise for demanding the term “radical Islamic terrorist”, I disagree that it’s helpful at all. Probably harmful. Tying “Islamic” with “radical” or “terrorist” as an overall term essentially binds the minds of the public to the combination. Like it or not, the intent behind Trump insisting on combining them is exactly that: to build a climate of xenophobia, not to clarify the issue. It is intended to EXACTLY tie ordinary Muslims with the concept of terrorism. It is intended to provide an excuse for accepting the very unAmerican premise of open discrimination based on religion. If I wanted to turn the world against Trump (not a bad idea, actually), I’d start insisting that people start combining the words “white male sociopathic serial murderer”. Most serial murderers are white, male, and sociopathic, right? Trump fits at least 2 of those descriptions, probably 3, so associating them all together would begin to apply a negative connotation to lots and lots of non-serial murderers. In other words, it’s not entirely about offending people (which is also a negative effect–why would we want to make people feel unwanted and angry???), but about actually inciting negative thoughts as a way to support a campaign of fear. Very, very dirty politics.

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