As America lurches toward the second year of the Trump administration, politicians on Capitol Hill are learning new ways to get in the president’s good graces — including feeding him his favorite types of candy. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California) recently shimmied into Trump’s inner circle thanks, in part, to a jar of cherry and strawberry Starburst candies that he presented to the POTUS, much to his delight.
The Washington Post notes that while traveling with Trump on Air Force One last fall, the congressman noticed that the most powerful man in the world was munching on a bowl of the fruit chews, but he was only eating the red and pink ones. “A bit later, a couple of his aides saw me with those colors and told me, ‘Those are the president’s favorites,’” McCarthy explains. The following week, the politician asked a staffer to put together a care package of just the red and pink candies and deliver it to the White House with a note explaining that it was a gift from the congressman.
McCarthy’s red and pink Starburst present was part of a broader scheme to ingratiate himself with Trump, and by all accounts, the politician’s efforts have paid off. The Post points out that, during conversations with the POTUS, McCarthy can “leap in without provoking Trump’s ire.” McCarthy sometimes receives impromptu requests to swing by the White House to meet with the top banana. He had dinner with the president at his golf club in West Palm Beach, Florida over MLK weekend. And McCarthy sat next to Trump during a screening of The Greatest Showman at Camp David earlier this year. “He likes to talk through the movie, and I like to talk through the movie — just ask my wife,” the congressman remarks.
Only time will tell if other politicians will try the Starburst trick to win favor with the president. But any Beltway power players who want to butter up Trump should also consider sending him a sleeve of Diet Coke, a most beautiful chocolate cake, or a sack of Quarter Pounders.