Andrew Jackson

Exchange of the Day

From an interview on Sirius XM airing later today:

PRESIDENT TRUMP: His wife died. They destroyed his wife and she died. He was a swashbuckler, but when his wife died you know he visited her grave everyday? I visited her grave actually because I was in Tennessee.

SALENA ZITO: That’s right, you were in Tennessee.

TRUMP: And it was amazing. The people of Tennessee are amazing people. They love Andrew Jackson. They love Andrew Jackson in Tennessee…

ZITO: He’s a fascinating…

TRUMP: I mean had Andrew Jackson been a little later you wouldn’t have had the Civil War. He was a very tough person, but he had a big heart. He was really angry that he saw what was happening with regard to the Civil War, he said “There’s no reason for this.” People don’t realize, you know, the Civil War, if you think about it, why? People don’t ask that question, but why was there the Civil War? Why could that one not have been worked out?

Donald Trump vs. Andrew Jackson

Jon Meacham: “The biggest distinction is experience. Jackson came to the presidency as a former judge, general, senator and presidential candidate. Despite his rabble-rousing image — opponents worried Jackson would become an ‘American Bonaparte’ — Jackson was in fact at home in the precincts of power because he’d been around the capital a good deal before becoming president.”

“The other key difference is that Jackson knew how to manage his own weaknesses. He wasn’t always successful at it, but a Jacksonian temper tantrum or threat was often calculated, not unhinged. We don’t yet know whether Trump can pull off the same feat of compensating for — and even leveraging — his hypersensitivity, for instance, and his weakness for hyperbole and chaos. I hope he can do what Jackson did and turn these vices into means for virtuous ends. To me, that’s perhaps the greatest question about Trump and temperament.”

Meacham’s book, American Lion: Andrew Jackon in the White House, is highly recommended.