After a quick Twitter game of will he or won’t he, Donald Trump sat down with the New York Times. Earlier in the day, Trump cancelled the meeting with a Tweet, saying the ‘failing’ Times had changed the terms and conditions of the meeting, before turning up at their offices shortly before noon. It was to set a precedent for the rest of the meeting with the newspapers, as he appeared to backtrack again, but this time on campaign pledges.
Backtracks and softer steps
First up was the Paris climate deal. Previously he had threatened to rip up the landmark agreement, calling global warming a hoax. He told the newspaper that there is ‘some connectivity’ between human activity and the rise in earth’s temperature. When pressed on whether he would withdraw from the deal he answered, “I’m looking at it very closely. I have an open mind to it.”
He also dropped a pledge to jail Hillary Clinton, saying he has no interest in pursuing inquiries into her use of a private email server or the Clinton Foundation. This would be a major step back from his campaign promises which became the chant echoed at his rally of ‘Lock her up’ and ‘Crooked Hillary’.
He said,“I don’t want to hurt the Clintons, I really don’t. She went through a lot and suffered greatly in many different ways.”
The FBI dropped its case against Clinon in July, saying her actions were careless but there were no grounds to bring charges over her use of a private email server.
He also expressed doubt over the use of torture techniques on terror suspects.
He even had kind words for the man he said was unfit to be president. On his meeting with President Obama he said, “I didn’t know if I’d like him. I probably thought that maybe I wouldn’t, but I did. I really enjoyed him a lot.”
Media ‘Not Nice’
Trump may have won the battle for the presidency, but he is still fighting a war with the press. On Monday during an off-the-record session the president-elect blasted TV journalists and executives, telling them they were liars, according to the New York Post.
Trump has often lashed out at the media over what he deemed was unflattering coverage, a trait that looks unlikely to change when he moves out of Trump Tower and into the White House.
(with New York Times and Reuters)