If something exists, then you can be certain that President-elect Donald Trump will make a spectacle out of it. After all, according to BR as he told the Wall Street Journal in an interview published on Friday, “Everything is under negotiation.”
One of the latest, under reported spectacles to come out of Donald Trump’s transition into the White House is over the decoration of the Oval Office.
Trump reportedly personally directed his son-in-law Jared Kushner and his adviser Steve Bannon to ask Great Britain for a bust of the nation’s former leader, Winston Churchill. Britain, via the nation’s foreign minister, Boris Johnson, was reportedly happy to comply with the request.
A spokesperson for British Prime Minister Theresa May commented, “The Prime Minister is happy to loan the Churchill bust to the White House and will be delighted to view it on display when she visits this Spring.”
Sounds nice, right? If only that was the whole story.
See, this isn’t the first time that this bust has even been in the United States’s possession. It was gifted from Britain to then-President George W. Bush in 2001, and sat in the White House until then-just elected President Obama allowed it to be removed in 2009. Obama replaced it with a bust of civil rights icon Martin Luther King, Jr. At that time, the loan on the bust was already set to expire, and Obama made no efforts to renew it.
The bust was never really that big of a deal — until Trump came along. The bust, technically, as mentioned, was on loan to the United States throughout the years that it sat in the Oval Office, and, when Obama removed it, the statue moved over to the United Kingdom’s Embassy in Washington, D.C.
What makes this whole story especially strange, however, is the reaction of leading conservatives to the news that the MLK bust was on its way out and the Churchill bust was on its way back.
Sarah Palin, for example, posted a link to a write up of the Oval Office decorations shuffle from the website of Young Conservatives along with the caption, “Kumbaya across the pond! We’ve been waiting for this!”
Kumbaya across the pond! We’ve been waiting for this! https://t.co/6tthiH9vPo
— Sarah Palin (@SarahPalinUSA) January 14, 2017
Now, why is the bust change so near and dear to Palin? The answer is easily discernible with a look both at the comments section of Palin’s tweet and at past comments by leading conservatives.
The right evidently takes the Winston Churchill bust disappearing from the Oval Office with the start of Obama’s presidency as some kind of affront to the Anglo-Americanism that emerged as the key ideological component to Donald Trump’s bid for the White House.
As conservative news outlet The Blaze reported:
‘Some speculate, including conservative documentary filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza, that Obama removed the bust because he has a hatred of American and British imperialism, which dominated the world in the early 20th century.’
Ironically, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is on Monday.