Donald Trump, a man who is very ill-equipped to run the country, would much rather spend his time basking in the praise of his supporters than do his homework, as evidenced by the fact that by choice, he receives only one presidential briefing a week.
Reuters reports that the president-elect has chosen to sit for and receive just the one briefing a week, in a move that like much of this entire campaign, is unprecedented. The President’s Daily Brief (PDB) is not a requirement for those waiting to take office, but Reuters reports that most president-elects in the past have “welcomed the opportunity.” Naturally, it’s not clear why he’s opting out of these very important informational sessions, but something tells me it’s because Donald Trump doesn’t really want to be president and therefore doesn’t want to do a lick of the work required. Meetings are boring! Rallies and continuing to serve as the executive producer of your reality television show are much more fun, easier on the ol’ brain and therefore much more in line with his interests.
It’s not to say that he’s not getting any information at all; the sources told Reuters that he’s asking for some information, but not all that’s available to him.
An official on the transition team said on Thursday that Trump has been receiving national security briefings, including “routine” PDBs and other special briefings, but declined to specify their content or frequency, saying these matters were classified.
Trump has asked for at least one briefing, and possibly more, from intelligence agencies on specific subjects, one of the officials said. The source declined to identify what subjects interested the president-elect, but said that so far they have not included Russia or Iran.
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While it’s terrifying to think of Trump in possession of the highly-classified information contained in said briefings, you’d think that someone who was woefully, dreadfully, frighteningly unprepared for the job would welcome any opportunity to learn. According to Former Central Intelligence Agency briefer David Priess, Richard Nixon refused to sit for in-person briefings, requested paper PDBs instead and later returned them to the CIA, unopened.
What’s in these briefings you ask? Secrets. So many secrets. Secrets that the current President is privy to and secrets that presumably allow any acting President to make intelligent decisions about the running of the country. Secrets about “U.S. espionage sources and covert operations overseas,” for example. Secrets that, frankly, shouldn’t be in the hands of Trump anyway, because he has absolutely no idea what to do with them. That’s the silver lining; take it if you want.
In stark contrast, the sources close to the matter report that his vice president Mike Pence receives at least six PDBs a week, which to me, is a clear indicator of the fact that once elected to office, Trump will rely heavily on his cabinet of horrors to run this country while he serves as nothing more than a figurehead.