President Donald Trump opted for a rally-style claim during his address to world leaders at the United Nations Tuesday, repeating the line that his administration has accomplished more than any other in history to this point in the first term — only rather than meeting cheers and applause, Trump was met with laughter.
Trump’s response was telling, too. Just as he seemed genuinely taken aback when NBC’s Peter Alexander called out his electoral college number-fudging last year, he did not seem to anticipate anybody questioning his claims of nearly unprecedented success as a president. It was as if he never even countenanced it.
Later in the speech, Trump made another overzealous claim: that Germany is becoming “totally dependent” upon Russian energy — which is similar to claims he made at a NATO summit a few months back.
Trump again was met with laughter, this time by the German delegation.
The fact that world leaders laughed is kind of funny and frivolous. But it is worth emphasizing the sensitive diplomatic setting in which this occurred. There are cameras in the room that are recording all of this. They caught the German delegation laughing at Trump. The leaders have to know such reactions could be recorded or observed — and possibly even used against them by Trump. They did it anyway.
It is exactly, in fact, the kind of thing Trump once said should be unacceptable for a U.S. president.