Over the course of the past three years a number of individuals who have had close interactions with the president have expressed their opinions of Donald Trump. These reports paint a picture of a president who is an inveterate liar, is immature, lacks character, is self-absorbed, is divorced from reality, is fickle and is clueless.
Unflattering descriptions come from more than a dozen people who had first-hand experiences dealing with Trump. Are they credible? There is no reason to not accept them as they are reported as they are remarkably consistent over a period of three years, and they came from a variety of sources – cabinet officials, White House staff, Republican senators.
These reports help explain to a large extent why Trump has been an abject failure in providing effective leadership, particularly during crises.
There was, however, one notable exception to these descriptions of the president. Vladimir Putin, president of Russia, said the president was very talented. Not a surprising statement coming from the Russian leader, a former KGB officer, who would relish the opportunity to feed the president’s ego while trying to take advantage of their relationship.
According to knowledgeable observers, Putin has been playing the president like a fiddle since their first meeting in Helsinki in 2017.