"That speech was a home run. That speech, if you look at Fox, OK, I'll mention you -- we see what Fox said. They said it was one of the great speeches. They showed the people applauding and screaming and -- and they were all CIA. There was -- somebody was asking Sean -- "Well, were they Trump people that were put--" we don't have Trump people. They were CIA people. [...]"I got a standing ovation. In fact, they said it was the biggest standing ovation since Peyton Manning had won the Super Bowl and they said it was equal. I got a standing ovation. It lasted for a long period of time. What you do is take -- take out your tape -- you probably ran it live. I know when I do good speeches. I know when I do bad speeches. That speech was a total home run. They loved it.... People loved it. They loved it. They gave me a standing ovation for a long period of time. [...]"That speech was a good speech.... The people of the CIA loved the speech.... That speech was a big hit, a big success -- success."
Donald Trump's speech to the CIA on his first full day as president was one of the strangest any president has delivered in recent memory. Standing in front of a memorial wall devoted to fallen CIA officials, Trump bashed the media, lied about his inaugural crowd size, bragged about how many times he's been on the cover of Time magazine, and assured his audience, "Trust me. I'm, like, a smart person."It was so bad, Former CIA Director and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said earlier this week that while watching Trump's remarks, it seemed "he forgot that he was president of the United States,"Trump, however, couldn't be more pleased with how it went. Consider what the new president told ABC News' David Muir yesterday about his controversial appearance. From the transcript:
All of this -- watching it, this exchange seemed to last an eternity -- was basically Trump's review of how pleased he was with his own speech, delivered a few days earlier, and how impressed he was with the applause.And America's new president wasn't done there. Describing his election victory, in which he received nearly 3 million fewer votes than his opponent, Trump said he won "one of the greatest victories ever." Soon after, he said of his inauguration, "In terms of a total audience including television and everything else that you have we had supposedly the biggest crowd in history. The audience watching the show. And I think you would even agree to that. They say I had the biggest crowd in the history of inaugural speeches. I'm honored by that. But I didn't bring it up. You just brought it up."It's just not healthy for any one person to invest quite so much energy into thinking about his own popularity -- especially when his focus should be on the most difficult job in the world.The Washington Post, referring to the president's first major television interview since taking office, added, "It revealed a man who is obsessed with his own popularity and eager to provide evidence of his likability, even if that information doesn't match reality."All joking aside, I found it difficult to watch the interview and not worry about Trump's state of mind so early into his own presidency.