According to Mark Leibovich of the New York Times, “the swamp feels anything but drained; more like remodeled into a gold-plated hot tub.” Much of this is due to Trump’s personal style with which he communicates. For example, the Trump White House has associated access with power. However, “getting close to him requires less sucking up than it did with pre-Trump presidents.” The term “access” is morphing with the Trump administration. Where once getting close to a President required judicious planning, now it may only require a compliment on Twitter.
However, getting close to Trump is just the first step. Because his decision making has been unpredictable thus far, lobbyists and corporations have been forced to tread lightly, for fear of “doing something to agitate the White House.” Along with presenting new challenges for players off the Hill, Trump also is changing the game within his own party. Republican members of Congress are being forced to defend the President more than usual, especially due to his Twitter activity.
One friend of the President who has managed to navigate being close but not too close is Corey Lewandowski. Lewandowski is one of Trump’s former campaign managers and confidant. He manages to steer clear of day to day issues, while remaining in Trump’s inner circle. Most of the other loud Trump supporters are columnists or former politicians who no longer have to face voters.
The communication style in Washington is changing, and not just due to Trump’s tweets, but rather how the administration deals with allies versus adversaries. Unfortunately, the Republican party is not updating their communication style as quickly as the administration is.