Obama, Trump and the powers of the Presidency

From The Washington Post

Is this a just assessment? Did Obama and the Democrats prime the weapon he’s now handing to Trump? Is it fair to imply that his campaign promises of restraint were insincere? Or is it more likely that on seeing the security situation and assessing the threats as President a good man simply changed his mind? Wouldn’t Trump have extended Presidential powers anyway even if Obama had worked to limit them?

No, Obama continued doing the same type of things as Bush did–not an expansion and strengthening of them.

Indeed. Bush fathered Obama and his never-ending drone war and assassinations. Obama also inspired Trump with his mass deportations.

Jesus, it’s Greenwald…

Yes I think we may be seeing the start that same sort of disconnect between campaign promises and post-election attitude with Trump. During his campaign building a wall and repealing the ACA were priorities, now that he’s talked to Obama they don’t seem as important to him.

Maybe it’s just that a presidential campaign is an echo-chamber of supporters and staff that gets more and more removed from reality.

So do politicians just lie to get elected, or upon winning are they told information that makes them change their mind?

I’ve often wondered how much of the non-elected government persists in spite of elections, and how much influence and power they have over the elected positions. From day one there are going to be government employees guiding the president-elect on what they need to know and do. Who are all these people, who hired them, and what are their qualifications and biases?

I have read there are over 4,000 White House staff positions and I’m sure a new president isn’t going to hand-pick even half of them, it will probably just be business as usual for those that don’t stand out. What are the biases of those staff, and how much influence, large and small, do they have on the Oval Office? What various people are the source of all the briefs that the president gets, and how complete, accurate, and even biased is that information?

That’s about the size of it. I believe very few politicians knowingly lie: they are prone to deceive themselves that a general claim or aspiration is something that can be achieved. But confronting politicians with the realities is what a permanent civil service is for.