How long has Donald Trump been saying that he intends to re-negotiate some of our international military agreements? Throughout the entire primaries, certainly, but Trump’s criticism of our global policing mission has been consistent since the late 1980s. It may not be fair to call Trump an isolationist, but that’s what many have labeled him as nonetheless.

Yet every time he repeats himself on this issue, the media acts like it’s the first they’ve ever heard of it. See the New York Times interview with Trump, published on Thursday. In it, Trump suggests that he would not necessarily come to the aid of the Baltic states if they were to face aggression from Russia – depending on whether or not they “fulfilled their obligations to us.”

And so you’ve got all of these pundits and Democrats running around like Trump just said the most controversial thing of the campaign so far. This is exactly what he’s been saying since the early years of the first Bush administration!

“For decades, the United States has given an ironclad guarantee to our NATO allies: we will come to their defense if they are attacked, just as they came to our defense after 9/11,” said Hillary Clinton in a statement. “Donald Trump was asked if he would honor that guarantee. He said…maybe, maybe not. Ronald Reagan would be ashamed.”

Yes, perhaps. And it’s clear that few leaders in the Republican Party, past or present, want the U.S. to pull out of NATO and abandon our military outposts throughout the world. If that were Trump’s proposal, he would not even be on the verge of uniting the party behind him.

But that’s not what he’s saying, and Republicans who do support Trump understand the difference. We can have a commitment to free trade, global military involvement, and even immigration, but that doesn’t mean we have to abide by bad deals and suffer the insults of bad partners. From the outset, Trump has prided himself on being a clever negotiator; he’s not coming in to wreck the world, he’s coming in to get America a better deal.

It’s been such a consistent theme of the campaign, you would have to be pretty stupid not to understand it by now. Stupid or…willfully ignorant.