Thousands upon thousands of words can—and have—been written about what a total disaster of infighting and backstabbing the Trump White House has become, but this detail from Politico’s Alex Isenstadt may tell you everything you need to know about how bad it is:
At the highest levels of the West Wing, the mood has grown so tense that staffers have begun calling up reporters inquiring whether other senior aides are leaking damaging information about them.
It’s like junior high school, only instead of whispering by the lockers about one another’s acne and who has a crush on whom they’re calling reporters and asking who said the epic Trumpcare failure was their fault or that Donald Trump was angry that they failed in his latest loyalty test. Also, the stakes here are just a little bit higher.
Sure, they’ve got plenty of failures to be upset about and to point fingers over, but the Trump team was a festival of backstabbing from early in the transition. When people are too busy jockeying for position and trying to do in their enemies, it gets harder to focus on policy. (Especially when you were ignorant and incompetent to begin with.) And no surprise here:
The environment, many Trump aides are convinced, has been created by the president himself — a larger-than-life figure famously loath to admit error. As Trump’s health care plan ran into problems, he found ways to divert blame — sometimes turning on his own staff.
Tell me another one about how we need a businessman running government …