Where was Donald Trump Tuesday night?

As seen from a window outside the Oval Office, President Donald Trump gives a prime-time address about border security Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2018, at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

The howling from the Left and the northeast liberal media notwithstanding, everything that President Trump said in his Tuesday night Oval Office address on border security is true. And please let me be clear, I mean true in the broad and consequential sense. If some lefty pundit wants to get down in the weeds and say that such and such statistic is actually “X” when the president said, “Y”, that doesn’t rise to the level of factual error. Such hairsplitting is of no consequence. For purposes of considering the fraught subject of border security, the president told the truth Tuesday night.

There is a crisis on the southern border. Border security has been promised multiple times by multiple administrations over a period of 25 years — all to no avail. Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and other well-known Democrats have voted in the past for a border wall. These things are all true, just as the president said.

The problem at the border is real. Yes, many of the people who enter do so hoping to make a better life for themselves. But the porous nature of our southern border means that drugs and criminals and gang members also enter the country, just as the president said.

American citizens are suffering economically because of illegal immigration, just as the president said. American citizens are dying because of illegal immigration, just as the president said.

These are unassailable facts. And therefore, the president’s Oval Office address passes any objective smell test. What he said is true.

Yet the address was, to my view, a total bust. In the words of one wag, it looked like a hostage video. He offered us a rather poorly done version of a traditional presidential Oval Office address. Not a single mind was changed.

That’s not what the voters who elected Trump signed up for. Trump voters signed up for the guy who speaks extemporaneously in plain language. That capacity to speak plainly and passionately did change minds. That’s why real estate mogul and reality TV star Donald Trump is now President Donald Trump.

Trump voters signed up for the guy who occasionally makes them flinch. They signed up for the guy who gets things done while sending opponents into a blind rage.

RELATED: Trump has no choice but to be Trump.

Trump voters voted for Donald Trump and Donald Trump didn’t show up Tuesday night, some wooden facsimile of him did.

Mr. President, a word of advice if you’ll permit me. If you want to get your border wall and keep your campaign promise, be the guy that triumphed over 16 Republican rivals on the way to defeating the undefeatable Hillary Clinton.

Promise those of us who, from time to time, really do flinch when you speak to never speak from a prompter again. That was your predecessor’s schtick and he was a helluva lot better at it than you.

We don’t want his schtick. We want your schtick. It’s what got you here and it’s the only thing that will keep you here.

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Paul Gleiser

Paul L. Gleiser is president of ATW Media, LLC, licensee of radio stations KTBB 97.5 FM/AM600, 92.1 The TEAM FM in Tyler-Longview, Texas.

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11 Responses

  1. Ray Baxter says:

    100% agree Paul! Trump needs to ditch that Obama talking machine & speak freely as he did during his campaign!

  2. Buddy Saunders says:

    My wife and I listed to President Trump’s border wall speech and we both thought it was fine. Trump is doing his best. The problem is the Democrats AND many Republicans. Come the next election, we won’t forget who betrayed our country. It sure isn’t President Trump.

  3. Holland Cooke says:

    Trump sure DID blow it Tuesday night, droning through a script he earlier told reporters he didn’t want to deliver.

    NOW he listens to advice? NOW that his wiser advisers (Priebus, Mattis, Flynn, et al) are gone? NOW he lets JV hacks like Miller shackle him to a TelePrompTer?

    Bad call. LET TRUMP BE TRUMP. He should’ve flashed the Senate and House switchboard numbers on the screen and hollered “Blow out the phone lines!”

    Find that Tuesday night speech online and watch it agsin, this time with the volume muted. This is no longer a confident leader.

    Today, Uncle Sam will stiff 800,000 federal workers and contractors who SHOULD be getting paid. And those hurt worst are paycheck-to-paycheck workin’ stiffs who PROTECT us: Coast Guard, food inspectors, and other guardians. TSA officers who also drive Uber might be catching a cold.

    And as we’re told Mueller’s report is looming “sooner than later,” Trump gropes for distractions like denying California FEMA funds?

    Talking heads abuzz about a crowded stage for 2020 Democratic presidential debates are missing the story: How many will be on stage for the Republican cattle call?

  4. Edwin Portier says:

    Great article, as usual. Always enjoy your thoughts.

  5. L Miles says:

    I listen to the substance and truthfulness of a speech, not the “glitz” of the presentation. The Obama shtick (an entertainment routine or gimmick) is sickening BECAUSE it is misleading and full of lies and his stumbled words that exhibit his ignorance while exposing his Marxist beliefs.

    I am not influenced by oratory. I am impressed with the truthful exposure of the horrible illegal alien invasion of this country that has resulted in the murder, maiming and robbery of hundreds of thousands of citizens which continues to drain the treasury with Democrat sponsored “magnet” benefits, all in the name of switching us to a third-world Marxist country. May the Obama legacy of lies and illegality be damned? Without Trump in the Presidency the nation would be plunging headlong into a borderless and bankrupt country with NO hope of recovery.

    • Paul Gleiser says:

      The problem is that those who are not yet persuaded do, in fact, need the “oratory.” As I say in the piece, no minds were changed Tuesday night. Those who support the president on the border wall continue to support the president on the border wall. Those who oppose, continue to oppose. It’s the undecideds in the mushy middle that need to be reached. That’s exactly how Donald Trump won the election. It was his unique brand of “oratory” — to use your word — that allowed him to prevail upon middle-of-the-road voters in Wisconsin and Michigan to vote for him.

      If Donald Trump allows himself to be shoved into a “traditional” presidency, delivering “traditional” presidential statements and appearing in “traditional” presidential settings, he will fail.

      The Donald Trump who won the election is the only guy who has a chance of getting a border wall done. That guy didn’t show up Tuesday night.

      • Holland Cooke says:

        AGREE. Given all that’s coming-at-him, this was the wrong time for the president to suddenly turn “presidential.” Dance with the one who brung ya.

      • L Miles says:

        I would suggest that you try listening to the speech without the visual imagery that is admittedly stiff. This was a spectacular speech that summarized the existential threat that the illegal alien invasion presents to this country. His vocal inflections were absolutely superb and he exhibited WHY his heart felt concern for the American victims is genuine. He is determined to FINALLY fix this 30+ year problem that NO other Republican since has had the courage or conviction to solve. I like to think that SUBSTANCE can overcome STYLE when the TRUTH is so beautifully proclaimed. I like to think that the “undecided in the mushy middle that need to be reached” can shake off their gullibility index (that we all are born with) to take Trump’s message seriously.

        You should hear/see the speech by the late Democrat Congresswoman Barbara Jordan from 1994, who headed the US Commission on Immigration Reform at the following YouTube video that I heard on KTBB, today. It will blow you away. This woman was a patriotic example of the former Democrat Party that doesn’t exist anymore.


        I would like to think that a clumsy STYLE can be heavily discounted by educated patriotic Americans looking for the TRUTH when such a superbly SUBSTANTIVE speech is delivered from the Whitehouse in 2019.

  6. Holland Cooke says:

    And HOW ABOUT Ted (and Beto) BEARDED?

    Don’t tell me!
    OK for Ted, NOT for Beto

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