July 3rd (Washington, D.C.) – On the eve of the country’s birthday, the President of the United States grabbed several reporters, a camera team, a security detail, and anyone who happened to be in the hallways, and took them on a walk around the nation’s capital.
Why it matters: The President has recently said that the federal government is too insulated from what is happening right outside their own door. According to the Commander-in-Chief, by staying inside the opulent halls of their buildings, those charged with representing the people have remained completely disconnected from them; that the marble-lined halls where everyone works blinds them to the suffering going on where they drive through every single day.
What happened: Visibly nervous Secret Service agents tried to stay ahead of the President as the leader-of-the-free-world guided a ragtag tour around the streets of the District of Columbia. This became especially true when the chief executive approached a homeless encampment and proceeded to interview several people about how they ended up in their current predicament, and what the government could do to assist them.
Between the lines: Although it was left unstated, the President appeared to be sending a message to the members of Congress about their insulation from the needs of average citizens, particularly those who have fallen between the cracks. Rhetorically, the President asked a member of the group from the White House, “What costs more? Killing someone thousands of miles away who might pose a threat to us in the future, or trying to help the people we have already failed at home?”
Zooming in: The President and Congress have been at loggerheads since day one, but it has become more pronounced lately as negotiations have recently fallen apart between the two sides over the budget. Here, the President appeared to be trying to strike a tone that set Congress up to be “uncaring” and “callous”, as opposed to the administration that is literally out on the streets with down on their luck individuals. Should a government shutdown occur in October, the President could frame the issue as the fault of an indifferent and selfish Legislative Branch.
What’s next: Most likely, the White House will continue to put pressure on Congress by controlling the message in the news cycle and presenting similar scenes. Any photos or videos of the members of Congress enjoying the Independence Day holiday in some semblance of opulence will be used against them by the media-savvy White House communications team. Such tactics have been par for the course for this administration, to varying degrees of success.
The bottom line: This move may actually backfire on the President as it could make it look like the head-of-state was willing to use desperate people as political props. However, reporters on the scene noted that the President appeared to display genuine empathy and did spend significant time with various people at the tent city.
- Budget negotiations are put “on hold” as both sides say they are too far apart to have constructive discussions
- House of Representatives creates committee to examine Executive spending
- Congressional leaders agree to meet with the White House following fiery State of the Union address
The above piece is an excerpt from the speculative fiction novel 254 Days to Impeachment: The Future History of the First Independent President by J.P. Prag, available at booksellers worldwide.
Learn more about author J.P. Prag at www.jpprag.com.
254 Days to Impeachment is a work of mixed fiction and nonfiction elements. With the fiction elements, any names, characters, places, events, and incidents that bear any resemblance to reality is purely coincidental. For the nonfiction elements, no names have been changed, no characters invented, no events fabricated except for hypothetical situations.
About the Creator
J.P. Prag is the author of "Compendium of Humanity's End", "254 Days to Impeachment", "Always Divided, Never United", "New & Improved: The United States of America", and "In Defense Of...", and more! Learn more at www.jpprag.com.