“He’s new at this.”

“He’s a businessman, not a politician.”

“He’s learning on the job.  Give him a chance.”

Here are two reasons why those arguments don’t fly:

  1. When you decide to run for president, there’s at least a year, if not more, of testing the waters, creating buzz, and ultimately campaigning. During that time, you and your team can educate yourselves about the requirements of the position. Of course there are things you’ll learn on the job, but there’s also ample time to learn before the job starts.
  2. There are numerous advisers at your disposal who have been there and done that. They’ve served at the highest levels in all branches of government under presidents from both parties, and they’re all available to provide you with insight, counsel, and  even simple explanations of how and how not to behave. You may not know what you’re doing, but you can hire people who do.

If you’re arrogant enough to believe that those 240-year-old protocols don’t matter and those experts are symbolic of “Washington business as usual”, that reveals the true nature of the problem. At minimum, anyone running for the highest office in the United States should be able to demonstrate a basic knowledge of American history and government.  The fact that our current president and his inner circle can’t is not only a failing on their part, it’s also a failing of the public’s understanding of what it really means to put someone in charge of running our country.