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How Did People Expect Hillary Clinton to Treat Donald Trump Yesterday?

george bush funeral donald trump hillary clinton

Yesterday was George H.W. Bush’s memorial service and every living president and vice president attended, sitting together in the front pew. Sitting next to her husband was popular vote winner should-be-president Hillary Clinton, and seeing as Donald Trump continues to speak and tweet about how he believes she should be in prison on a near-daily basis, I don’t think anyone is reaching in calling her body language towards him, let’s say, chilly.

They both refused to look at each other or shake hands, which, again, is understandable since he still uses her as a deflection prop more than two years after their race ended. But a whole lot of news outlets and pundits have decided this is worth criticizing.

Clinton was even criticized for things she didn’t do, as per usual. MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, who has a long history of making gross, misogynistic comments about Clinton, apparently speculated that she and President Jimmy Carter don’t like each other because I guess at one point they were leaning away from each other and not speaking. Which is a weird thing to state since during plenty of other moments, they looked like this:

So Hillary Clinton was criticized for not smiling enough and not making eye contact with the man who has spent three years regularly calling for her arrest, and then when she is smiling and talking amiably, it’s just flat-out ignored.  Yup, that sounds like the Hillary Clinton coverage I remember.

As for Donald Trump, the coverage could not be more different. Politico praised him for his “surprise display of decorum,” apparently just for showing up in the first place and not yelling at everyone.

“On Monday evening, Trump channeled a kinder, gentler version of his wrecking-ball spirit,” they wrote. “He paid a surprise visit to the Capitol, where Bush’s casket is lying in state. A president who rarely passes up a chance to speak his mind offered nothing in the way of commentary but a silent salute. The White House’s official Instagram feed featured an image of the 41st president’s portrait, draped in black cloth.”

Trump, too, reportedly thought he deserved to be declared a hero for doing the bare minimum. According to The New York Times, he’s super jealous of all the attention Bush has been getting this week due to his, you know, death, and Trump can’t wait for everything to be about him again.

So Hillary Clinton was condemned for ignoring Trump, while he received no criticism for shunning her.

Similarly, Michelle Obama was expected to be civil to the man who spread vile, racist conspiracy theories about her husband.

Meanwhile, Trump gets to literally just show up, slouch in his seat, and do nothing else, not be cordial, not participate in any way.

And with that, he’s celebrated as being especially “presidential.”

(image: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) has a lot of opinions about a lot of things. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband Brock Wilbur and too many cats.