Of all the perks, powers, and privileges President Trump enjoys as leader of the free world, the one that makes him "happiest" is posing for photos in the Oval Office, Trump's aides told Politico. One senior White House official estimated that Trump has "probably taken 10,000 pictures" during his 219 days in office:
He tells aides, from senior White House advisers to his private bodyguard, Keith Schiller, to snap the photos on cell phones, or he shouts for Shealah Craighead, the official White House photographer, to come in. The often impatient president will sometimes pose for several minutes per sitting, taking variations of a photo with a single group. He even stands with people to inspect the photos.
"Check the lighting," one senior White House official said, describing his comments. "Are your eyes closed? Do you want another? He knows these are special moments for people." [Politico]
After the photo ops, Trump's aides rush to send the photos to the visitors, in the hopes they'll be shared on social media. "It's the fastest I've seen them do anything," one adviser told Politico.
Perhaps the photo ops remind Trump of his old days, when he was posing at Trump Tower alongside trophies and Shaquille O'Neal's shoes. Or perhaps Trump just really likes the look of him sitting behind the Resolute Desk flanked by his important visitors. "In the way he does the photos, he's a star in every one," said presidential historian Douglas Brinkley. "He loves being in demand for a photo every minute. It is a narcissistic supply."
Learn more about Trump's prized photo sessions at Politico.