Tags: Donald Trump | Media Bias | Trump Administration | leon panetta | defense | secretary | mitch mcconnell

Panetta: Trump Always Thinks 'He's Smartest Guy in the Room'

Image: Panetta: Trump Always Thinks 'He's Smartest Guy in the Room'
President Donald Trump (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

By    |   Tuesday, 22 August 2017 08:57 PM

Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Tuesday that President Donald Trump "thinks that he's the smartest guy in the room — and that's the biggest mistake a president can make" amid reports about a rift with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

"When it comes to decisions involving domestic policy, I don't think he listens very well," Panetta, who served in the Obama White House, told Anderson Cooper on CNN. "The result is, he hasn't been willing to build the kind of team that he built on national security.

"He's built a strong team on national security. Thank God he's willing to listen to them.

"What he needs to do is to build that same kind of team when it comes to the legislative challenges he faces on the Hill," Panetta said.

The New York Times reported Trump and McConnell, the six-term Kentucky Republican, haven't spoken since earlier this month — and that the majority leader has questioned privately whether the Trump can salvage his presidency.

Panetta told Cooper that President Trump needed a strong team, including solid rapport with Congress, to pass his domestic agenda.

"The economic challenges that are facing this country," Panetta said, "he's got to be able to have a team that can do the job because — frankly — he can't do it.

"He's not built right to be able to do this.

"He's going to have to rely on good people who are willing to reach out and try to develop coalitions in the Republican Party, respect the leaders on both sides, and try to develop the kind of coalition that can pass tax reform, that can pass funding for infrastructure, and do the things he wants to achieve.

"If he's not willing to do that, nothing is going to happen."

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Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Tuesday that President Donald Trump "thinks that he's the smartest guy in the room, and that's the biggest mistake a president can make" amid reports about a rift with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
leon panetta, defense, secretary, mitch mcconnell
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2017-57-22
Tuesday, 22 August 2017 08:57 PM
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