'Wall Street Journal' DC bureau chief: Trump's need to punch back undercuts his success

'Wall Street Journal' DC bureau chief: Trump's need to punch back undercuts his success
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The Wall Street Journal’s Washington bureau chief, Gerald F. Seib, says that President TrumpDonald John Trump Former US ambassador: 'Denmark is not a big fan of Donald Trump and his politics' Senate Democrats push for arms control language in defense policy bill Detroit county sheriff endorses Booker for president MORE’s need to punch back undermines his success.

“The president often deflects attention to the negative,” Seib wrote in a column Monday.

“He seems incapable of moving away from of his longstanding practice in the private sector of punching back at any and all who challenge him.”

Seib asked readers to imagine “a parallel universe” in which the president did not call "a onetime top female aid a 'dog,'” pull former CIA Director John BrennanJohn Owen BrennanWebb: Questions for Robert Mueller A brief timeline of Trump's clashes with intelligence director Dan Coats Trump critic Brennan praises his Iran decision: I 'applaud' him MORE’s security clearance, or blast out tweets attacking the FBI and special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerMueller report fades from political conversation Trump calls for probe of Obama book deal Democrats express private disappointment with Mueller testimony MORE's probe last week.

“In that parallel universe,” Seib wrote, Trump’s successes would have gotten more attention. 

“In a conventional presidency, the White House in general, and the president in particular, would be far more inclined to ignore critics and stay away from feuds, particularly when there are good things to talk about instead,” Seib wrote.

Seib believes the administration has had a number of successes.

He cited a report on booming sales in stores and restaurants, the stock market's surge on Thursday — the largest one-day rise in the last four months, the Trump FDA's approval of a generic version of a lifesaving drug, and the resumption of trade talks with China, who Seib said responded to Trump's "tough actions."

Seib said that while Trump is likely to blame the media for negative coverage he should look at his own actions.

“In fact, Mr. Trump almost compels the press to cover stories that infuriate him by refusing to ignore them himself," he wrote.