In a recent Washington Post article, it was claimed that according to The Fact Checker’s database, which analyzes, categorizes and tracks every suspect statement uttered by the president, in the 466 days since he took office, President Trump has made 3,001 false or misleading claims,. The Washington Post used this data point to color President Trump as dishonest and by extension untrustworthy. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Truth is a bedrock trait that all civilized societies and religions value. We trust those we maintain tell the truth. Albert Einstein once said, “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.” Maimonides, the venerable Jewish philosopher wrote, “A person is forbidden to act in a smooth-tongued and luring manner. He should not speak one thing outwardly and in his heart think otherwise. Rather, his inner self should be like the self which he shows to the world. What he feels in his heart should be the same as the words on his lips. It is forbidden to deceive people…It is forbidden to utter a single word of deception or fraud. Rather one should have only truthful speech, a proper spirit and a heart pure from all deceit and trickery.” Judaism places a premium on being an honest person.
For as long as humans have decided to enter politics, there’s been a natural distrust of politicians. In an 1992 address to the Detroit Economic Club, then Presidential candidate Bill Clinton said, “No wonder Americans hate politics when, year in and year out, they hear politicians make promises that won’t come true because they don’t even mean them – campaign fantasies that win elections but don’t get nations moving again.” I’m curious if a study has ever been conducted of how many of President Clinton’s campaign promises were fulfilled.
One promise that President Clinton made that was not fulfilled was his pledge to move the American Embassy in Tel Aviv to Israel’s capital, Jerusalem. To his credit, Clinton signed the promise into law, but he never moved the Embassy to Jerusalem. Tomorrow we will celebrate the actualization of President Clinton’s promise, but it won’t be a Clinton who fulfilled the promise, it will be President Trump. When announcing the decision to move the Embassy, President Trump said, “While previous presidents have made this a major campaign promise, they failed to deliver. Today, I am delivering.”
This isn’t the first time President Trump has taken a major policy step to fulfill a campaign promise. Last week, President Trump announced that he was pulling out of the Iran deal. During the 2016 Presidential campaign, President Trump frequently criticized the Iran deal and promised to rip it up. Like his promise to move the Embassy, many doubted President Trump’s sincerity. The critics cynically said that President Trump wouldn’t keep his promise to end the deal.
In contradistinction to the Washington Post article cited at the start of this essay, President Trump‘s fulfilling his campaign promises shows that he is a man who keeps his word. Israelis and many Pro-Israel Americans are ecstatic at President Trump’s exiting the Iran deal and tomorrow’s Embassy move. They have come to realize that President Trump is an American President they can count on, and Israelis have come to rely on his support. President Trump is a man of his word.