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Mocking Sanford's loss, Trump shows he is who we think he is

Trump didn't need to say anything about Mark Sanford last night, but the president was apparently eager to put his classlessness on display.
Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford answers questions from reporters after voting in Charleston, S.C., on Tuesday, April 2, 2013. (AP Photo/Bruce Smith)
Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford answers questions from reporters after voting in Charleston, S.C., on Tuesday, April 2, 2013.

The point of Donald Trump's closed-door appearance on Capitol Hill last night was to help guide Republicans on immigration policy. That didn't go especially well: not only did the president fail to bring any clarity to the debate, he also veered into unrelated topics that popped into his head.

One House GOP member told reporters after the event that he found it "hard to follow everything [Trump] says. He's kind of like a bouncing ball."

And as the Washington Post  reported, at one point, that bouncing ball landed on Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.).

Rep. Mark Sanford was at the airport in Charleston, S.C., for four hours of "airplane hell" when President Trump veered from his speech on immigration to the South Carolina Republican."I want to congratulate him on running a great race!" Trump said sarcastically, to awkward silence from more than 200 of his Republican colleagues.Hearing silence from the room, Trump then piled on and said, "What, nobody gets it," and added that Sanford is a "nasty guy."

According to multiple accounts, the president's comments were met with some boos from House Republicans.

Sanford lost in a GOP primary last week against a Republican rival who attacked him as insufficiently loyal to Trump. Last night, unprompted, the president thought it'd be a good idea to rub the congressman's nose in it.

This wasn't in response to a pointed question or a snide remark from Sanford. In fact, the South Carolina Republican wasn't even there. But Trump, who didn't need to say anything about Sanford, apparently wanted to put his classlessness on display.

It was an extraordinary reminder: Donald Trump is who we think he is.

For his part, now that Sanford is free to say as he pleases, the outgoing congressman recently described the president's role in the Republican Party as "a cancerous growth."

We're left to wonder how many of Sanford's colleagues agree, but are unwilling to say so.