Trump is most like Millard Fillmore? Perhaps in his failures . . .


One story says Queen Victoria commented that Millard Fillmore was the handsomest man she'd ever met; true or not, imposing Trump's face on Fillmore doesn't improve anything. Illustration from BBC

One story says Queen Victoria commented that Millard Fillmore was the handsomest man she’d ever met; true or not, imposing Trump’s face on Fillmore doesn’t improve anything. Illustration from BBC

Millard Fillmore was a self-educated man, an ardent reader, the founder of the White House library.

Millard Fillmore understood the strategic geography of Japan, an opened Japan up to the world.

Has Trump done anything beneficial? Logical? Based on good, accurate information?

We may have a bone to pick with BBC.

BBC’s article, by Jude Sheerin from the Washington bureau, actually is quite well done. The article compares the nativism in Fillmore’s time, to which Fillmore fell victim, with Trump’s nativism — and the comparison is troubling.

In the end, the Whigs refused to nominate Fillmore to run for his own term in 1852 (he had succeeded President Zachary Taylor on Taylor’s death, remember); Fillmore was courted by the American Party, better known to school kids as the Know-Nothings. Fillmore led the Know-Nothings to a crushing defeat in 1852 (they did get Maryland), but the Whigs never recovered either. In 1856, partly in the ashes of the Whigs, rose the Republican Party to run John C. Fremont for President.

And in 1860, the new Republican Party managed to knock a homerun, getting Abraham Lincoln elected to the presidency on the party’s second try.

“What is past is prologue,” the wall of the National Archives tells us, and Santayana warns that those who do not remember history will repeat it. What lessons can we learn from comparing Donald Trump to Millard Fillmore?

Other than the fact that Fillmore was actually quite a bit better looking, that is.

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4 Responses to Trump is most like Millard Fillmore? Perhaps in his failures . . .

  1. […] Is Donald Trump really a reincarnation of Millard Fillmore? The BBC story […]

    Like

  2. I wonder what Queen Elizabeth will think of President Trump? I tend not to trust a person who does not read. I did not know Fillmore founded the White House library.

    Like

  3. richmx2 says:

    Being a native of the Finger Lakes, I’ve always had a soft-spot for “our” only President. One might add that Fillmore also sought to establish good relations with Mexico, and to speak respectfully of its government.

    Like

  4. Ellie says:

    The current president was sent to good schools and learned nothing about history or civics. He even went to military school and came out ignorant of the meaning of Retreat and what is done when Retreat is played. The current president does not read; in fact, I suspect functional illiteracy. The current president sees no value in books, although I’m sure he’d like a library named after him, as long as his last name was in large, shiny, gold letters. Go ahead, and pick bones with them; they deserve it.

    Liked by 1 person

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