Opinion: Donald Trump isn’t ‘flip-flopping.’ He’s lying.

Trump at New York Times
President-elect Donald Trump meets Tuesday with New York Times journalists and executives, including Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr., right.
(Hiroko Masuike / New York Times)

To the editor: Immediately after the election there were vigorous discussions regarding the media’s soft treatment of the candidates and how to remedy it. Now, less than three weeks later, The Times and others have reverted. (“Trump shifts on at least 3 prominent issues: Climate, torture and prosecution of Clinton,” Nov. 22)

The print headline “Flip-flopping en route to the White House” is a prime example. Flip-flopping is when you change your egg order from over easy to scrambled. Saying climate change is a “hoax” and then stating there is “mild evidence” of human involvement, threatening to prosecute Hillary Clinton (when it is not in a president’s purview to do such) and then saying, “I don’t want to hurt the Clintons,” is not flip-flopping, it is lying.

For The Times to ponder whether or not President-elect Donald Trump’s remarks reflected a “genuine pivot” is ignoring all that has been observed over the last 18 months. Either he was lying then, now or (most likely) both, as his short attention span and desire to deflect any accusations with whatever comes out of his mouth are well documented. 

This leaves two possibilities: The Times either believes he will change, or it is frightened to label him a liar. The latter is not only sad, it is also an abdication of journalistic responsibility.


Glenn Egelko, Ventura


To the editor: One should not be surprised that Trump is expressing opinions now that differ from what he said before the election. He has not received enough credit for his brilliant (but cynical) campaign. 

Early on Trump realized that while Republicans could not win by appealing to majorities, there were still many single-issue voters around. So he went after them.


He became an avid supporter of gun rights, picking up members of the National Rifle Assn. He changed from pro-choice to anti-abortion. He appealed to conspiracy theorists by denying President Obama’s natural-born citizenship. Add in the Clinton haters, the anti-taxers, the anti-Muslim voters and the anti-immigration people, and you have a Trump presidency. His brilliant campaign may change politics forever. 

We can already see that the electorate was cleverly manipulated and that Trump had no intention of implementing most of his promises. He will not lock up Hillary Clinton. Trade agreements and Obamacare don’t look so bad. Climate change might even be real! 

Unless we find some way to educate Americans about the necessity of compromise in politics, I am very afraid for the future of our country.

Bruce Scott, Fountain Valley


To the editor: If Trump moves to the center, I am all for it. 

I did not vote for Trump. But rather than tag him a “flip-flopper,” I would applaud the evolution of his understanding. Like it or not, he will be the next president. 

I will continue to hope that as he delves deeper into issues like climate change, the Affordable Care Act, torture and Medicare, he will move away from the simplistic bombast of his campaign and the House Republicans.


Michael Olson, Pasadena


To the editor: As a liberal Democrat and Clinton supporter, I’m relieved that Trump seems to be “flip-flopping” or at least backing off with respect to some of his more repulsive positions. 

However, it just goes to show that The Donald, like all politicians, will say anything to get elected. 

Carolyn Gill, Redlands

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