Donald Trump is ahead in the pool of Republican contenders, but I recommend caution in considering this man for president.  He is smart, brash, confident, and successful, but there are shortcomings that are serious for a man seeking our highest office.

Business success does not readily translate to political success.  A business leader has a distinctive decision making edge that does not require the great level of compromise of a political leader.  In business, to a large degree, you get to control your own narrative; in politics you do not.  We desperately need private sector experience in the executive branch; Obama’s team has less than any president in history. But the jobs requires more than just having succeeded in the business realm.

Like it or not political experience is a plus. Just as the Trump’s great experience in negotiating business deals gives him an edge in that realm, his lack of experience in the political realm is a handicap.  Failures are not uncommon where a egoist with success in one field mistakenly assumes that equates to success in other non related fields.

Just because Trump brags about making money off the Chinese and claims to ‘know’ the Chinese, does not mean he is qualified to negotiate with them on global issues.  His strong armed attitude to stand up to those who take advantage of us simply smacks of cheap populist rhetoric.

Trump’s political history seems more governed by pragmatism than principle.  The ‘git ‘er done’ attitude that serves us well in business can get us into trouble in politics.  Short term solutions have begat many of our long term problems.

We have become enamored with celebrities as leaders.  We do not need talk show hosts and attractive people with pretty smiles who can excite a studio audience.  We need leaders who can articulate clear principles, complex issues,  and solutions to a wide group of voters rather than boast and brag how good they are.  Confidence is important, but so is humility.

Look at the opposite of a Donald Trump- Harry Truman. He was a failure in business, a henpecked husband living with his mother in law who rode into federal office at the behest of a local crooked politician. He was not highly educated, but he was well read and had very clear principles about government and the office of the president.  He made a name for himself in the Senate, courageously attacking special interests that were profiting excessively from our war effort.

Truman did not want the office; FDR had to guilt him into running on his ticket.  Truman made decisions without regards to polls and left office a very unpopular president.  Yet he accomplished much and is commonly  regarded as a superb leader by many presidential  historians.

It would be nice to have leaders who have experienced setbacks and circumstances beyond their control.  We do not want their first experience with a setback to be in the most powerful position in the world.

The race to the White House is early and there is much weeding out yet to happen.  Trump is interesting and fun to watch and if the race ended up between Trump and Obama I would readily support Trump, but I am uncertain how he will perform when the cameras and studio lights are off.