One of the people watching President-elect Donald Trump’s press conference today was none other than former CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather. Displeased with what Trump had to say, Rather took to his public page on Facebook to offer some “advice” to the incoming POTUS about how to handle himself lest he end up like former presidents that had an asterisk next to their name.
“President Asterisk,” began Rather. “Watching the press conference today and the days that have preceded it, I think that is what Donald Trump, with his dangerous mixture of big ego and thin skin, is worried about.”
Rather went on to explain that presidents with asterisks next to their name wound up like that because of some heinous thing they did while in office that brought dishonor on themselves. Rather mentions Nixon, “whose moral and legal transgressions earned him a place of relative infamy,” and said that Trump’s dealings with Russia may earn him one as well.
Rather goes on to tell Trump that it would be wise for him to change his ways.
What’s done is done with the vote. There will not be an election redo. But if you, Mr. Trump, fail to take the Russian threat seriously, there will be an asterisk next to your name. If you do not disentangle yourself from your business interests, if you promote corrupt or conflicted advisors and cabinet members, if you fail to understand the gravity of the foreign policy crisis you face, if you deprive millions of health care without an alternative, if you fail to act on the global threat of climate change, if you pit Americans against each other by race, gender, and religion, if you undermine science and reason, if you do these or any of the other items on a long list of what now seems probable, there will be an asterisk next to your name.
“History is watching President-elect Trump, the asterisk part is up to you,” finished Rather.
Some may find Rather’s words hollow, as he was fired from CBS in 2004 from making false claims that George W. Bush avoided serving in Vietnam because his father, George H. W. Bush was able to use his status as a congressman to give him preferential treatment. This was based off of forged documents that Rather called “fake, but accurate.”