Wednesday, February 26, 2020
Miles from the Mainstream
D. R. ZUKERMAN, proprietor

A letter to The New York Times,
not printed:

June 5, 2019 --

This is to disagree with Michelle Cottle's "Editorial Observer, " May 23. President Trump's statement, yesterday, on why he could not discuss infrastructure with Speaker Pelosi and Sen. Schumer, was hardly the "tirade" that Ms. Cottle said it was, much less a "tantrum"; it was delivered, as I heard it, in a calm, measured, dispassionate tone. The likely "'proximate cause'" of the president's decision not to go forward with the meeting with the
Democratic leaders was indeed the speaker's earlier accusation that the president '''is engaged in a cover-up up.'" But rather than "outrage," Mr. Trump's tone in explaining his decision seemed one of sadness.

Nearly three years ago, New York Times media correspondent Jim Rutenberg set forth new rules for covering then candidate-Trump: down with objectivity, the subjective view of the reporter above all. Ms. Cottle's discussion of the Trump response to the newly empowered House Democrats' investigatory zeal makes it clear that the Rutenberg rules for covering Donald J. Trump remain very much in effect. The invidious nature of these rules, has, alas, a bill of attainder quality for its singularity of purpose, not unlike the bill just approved by the New York legislature that would allow the president's state tax returns to be handed over to Congress.