"So one year ago today, when Donald Trump was elected president, the Editorial Board hoped we were wrong to have declared him, in the campaign’s final weeks, unfit for the White House.
"We hoped that Trump could, as he promised during the Republican primaries, become “more disciplined” and “so presidential, you will be so bored.”
"And we hoped that, once in office, he would reach out beyond his core supporters, govern in an inclusive fashion and — yes — tone down his Twitter tirades. We were encouraged on election night when he said, “It is time for us to come together as one united people.”
"One fifth of the way into Trump’s four-year term, however, it is glaringly and alarmingly apparent that he is incapable of any such pivot. He remains ill-equipped for the Oval Office, divisive in his conduct and contemptuous of constitutional values.
"Every time the president hits what is declared a “new low,” a new “new low” isn’t far behind: Seeing “very fine people” among white supremacists marching in Charlottesville, Va. Calling NFL protesters SOBs who ought to be fired.
Threatening to yank the broadcast licenses of critical TV stations. Threatening at the United Nations to “totally destroy” North Korea, a nation of 25 million people. Getting into a disagreement with a Gold Star widow.
"The most egregious abuses of power involve Trump’s efforts to undermine the rule of law: Firing FBI Director James Comey, who declined to pledge loyalty or to lay off former national security adviser Michael Flynn. Pardoning law-breaking Sheriff Joe Arpaio. And, just last week, calling the U.S. criminal justice system “a joke” while renewing pressure on the Justice Department to investigate political foes.
"Though we disagree with many of the president’s policies — particularly the way he has undermined U.S. credibility abroad by repudiating the Paris climate accord and the Iran nuclear deal — our objections have far less to do with ideology than with basic qualities of temperament and integrity. Inside accounts consistently describe an impulsive president who seethes as he watches cable news, and he continues to lie with impunity.
"All presidents, of course, have been known to shade the truth. But Trump has taken mendacity to a whole new level. By one count, he has made false or misleading claims at an average of five per day. [Actually, the number average is over 6 lies/day - see Washington Post article featured on previous page for details, or read the story linked here.]
"With each falsehood, Trump’s word carries less respect, an intolerable circumstance for a sitting president. This dishonesty is compounded by self-absorption, family enrichment and a continuing lack of transparency about his personal finances.
"Taken together, these traits lead to the same question that Gen. David Petraeus asked a journalist after the United States invaded Iraq in 2003: “Tell me how this ends.”
"Even as Trump’s presidency appears increasingly unsustainable, the answer isn’t readily apparent. "Perhaps special counsel Robert Mueller will assemble an obstruction of justice case. Perhaps Trump’s base will begin to erode as he fails to deliver on campaign promises. Perhaps more Republicans will break ranks, the way Sens. Bob Corker and Jeff Flake have done, and begin to regard Vice President Pence as a stable alternative.
"Or perhaps Captain Trump will remain at the controls for the foreseeable future, taking the nation and the world on a turbulent, frightening ride. In that case, it would behoove Republicans who put country ahead of party to prepare to break into the cockpit."