The real estate mogul and former reality TV star currently occupying the White House knows how to put on a show. He also seems to think props make all the difference when it comes to captivating an audience and getting your point across. President Trump and his staff have made a habit of placing stacks of papers and binders on stage during speeches and press conferences, turning a political event into much more of a performance.
While the president himself has been known to take the stage beside a table holding paper props, his White House press secretary has done it, too. It's unclear who came initially up with the idea, but it certainly stuck.
During a speech at the Department of Transportation on Friday, President Trump stepped away from the podium for a minute to flip through large binders he said were environmental reports. He wanted to demonstrate his point that there are too many rules and procedures for building new infrastructure, which, according to him, makes the process slower and more costly.
All the stunt really showed, though, was how much he loves a good prop.
Back in January, when Trump's transition team was helping him shift from private citizen to president of the United States, he held a press conference to show he was turning over his business to his sons. As he explained how he was removing himself from his eponymous company, Trump stood beside a table with stacks and stacks of manila envelopes filled with papers he said were documents he signed to give control of the company to his sons.
Was this the president's idea? Maybe. Does a shorter bill automatically mean a better bill? Absolutely not.
If you're wondering what the deal is with all the papers, it's pretty simple. Trump believes complicated American laws make it impossible to get anything done. Based on the stack of alleged business papers, he also seems to believe lots of papers prove something is getting done.
As you probably deduced, these two beliefs are unavoidably contradictory.