Ya know, when you were a kid, your parents always told you that the only to handle a bully was to stand up to the bully. That was easy for your parents to say, because they weren’t the ones who were going to get their ass kicked in the middle of the school yard. besides, the real problem was never the bully himself, it was the preteen cro=magnons the bully was flanked by. The air of invincibility was in the strength of numbers, and the bully knew it.
Donald Trump is a typical New York bully. When he started his run for President, he was the first one to pick up a gang to surround himself with. But not just any gang, all politicians get their “base,” but there was something different about Trump’s base. If a Marco Rubio dropped out of a race, his “base” would find somebody else to support. If anything happened to Trump, his base wasn’t going anywhere. Ted Cruz proved early that he was too tactically stupid to be president by continuing to coddle Trump in hopes of picking up Trump’s supporters when he finally flamed out. When faced with resistance from the teachers, Trump used his base until the principal gave him her lunch money.
As president, Trump used his base to keep his GOP congress firmly in line. There was no sense in trying to defy Trump, since the bully had already dispatched 16 brave souls who had dared to stand up to him in the primaries. And while Trombies may not have been the sole reason that all of these Senators and Representatives got elected in 2016, Trump turning them against the incumbents might well be a reason for them to be defeated in 2018 or 2020. So, the congress joined the base standing beside Trump.
Trump became invincible, at least in his own mind. There was no reason for him to change, either personally or politically, since his original antics were what was so popular with his base, and got him elected in the first place. He was free to say or do anything he wanted, since nobody in the congress would dare to stand up to him, for fear of being thrown to the Trump wolves in the next election. Examples were made of apostates like Jeff Flake and Bob Corker, making their independence an issue with the base that made it impossible to be reelected. The bully was unfettered.
Look, Personally I have no doubt that Trump is both paranoid as well as delusional. But it was Trump himself that broke the spell of invincibility without which no bully can survive. Every president loses seats in the first midterm of his presidency, and Trump had set himself up for, as President Obama put it, “ a shellacking.” An intelligent politician would have stayed out of the midterms, taken his puppy whupping, and blamed it on the candidates. But not Trump. He let his mania override any good sense he may have. He pitted his cult of personality against all of the odds, and he lost. He forced himself into the midterms, and he made it all about him. And he still got vaporized. Trump hysterically proclaiming a beautiful “red wave” was eerily reminiscent of Hitler screaming about the “phantom army” that was only days away from saving Berlin from his bunker in the spring of 1945.
Remember, Trump started this fight with three cro=magnons standing next to him, the House, the Senate, and his base. The House fell in battle, and why did they fall in battle? Because his base wasn’t strong enough to save them. Now, he only has one enforcer left, the Senate, And how sure can Trump be of the Senate, when they saw what happened to their buddies in the House, thanks to those wimps in the base?
This is why Trump now has two Secret Service agents carrying a fainting couch behind him everywhere he goes. There is a new bully in the schoolyard, and his name is Robert Mueller. He’s a total badass, and he brought a friend. A brand new Democratic led House of Representatives, fressh from mopping the floor with his base. Will the Senate stand with him to the bitter end? There are 22 GOP Senators up for reelection in 2020, and I don’t wanna hear about how only two seats are flippable. Just ask Roy Moore about how secure red states are these days. Or Martha McSally. Jon Tester and Joe Manchin might have a thing or two to say about that as well. And those results were accomplished before Robert Mueller releases the results of his exhaustive investigation, none of which is going to bolster Trump’s chances in 2020. And actual logic doesn’t make much of an impression on a paranoid mind anyway.
Trump is delusional, but he’s not that delusional. I can see how Trump could honestly believe he did nothing wrong in 2016. After all, Trump himself has been buying and selling politicians for his whole life, why shouldn’t Vladimir Putin be able to dabble in options futures in US elections. besides, Trump has never played by the rules in his life, that’s what bankruptcy laws are for, right?
Here is the real reason for Trump’s raging paranoia, and his increasingly foul mood and desperation. Forget impeachment for the moment, let’s say that the Senate has his back. I don’t care how delusional Trump is, the midterms of 2018 obliterated his force field of invisibility. Trump surrounded himself in the cocoon of his base, the House, and the Senate. Even if he’s not impeached, the House will make his life a living hell. Eric Swalwell told Bill Maher on Real Time last night that the people of the United States will see Trump’s tax returns. Impeachment is not the worst thing that can happen to Donald Trump. The worst thing that could happen to Donald Trump is the death of his voracious ego. To be finally, once and for all, exposed as a fraud, a cheat, and a loser! And one who isn’t worth nine billion dollars to boot.
Besides, Trump now has potentially more personally serious skin in this game. The statute of limitations for federal crimes is 5 years. If Trump were to lose to a Democrat in 2020, which just became a real possibility with the thumping he took this month, thanks to Robert Mueller, “conspiracy to defraud the United States” charges could be filed well before the statute of limitations runs out. And all of those bright, new, shiny preemptive pardons for himself and his family? Don’bank on it. Those will end up before the Supreme Court. Forget about Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. Trump has already wiped his ass with the legacy of the Roberts court. John Roberts himself would vote with the liberal justices to strike those down, just to restore a shred of dignity to his name. Chief Justices have egos too you know.
Which is why the very first thing that the new congress must do is to immediately sunset the Iraq war AUMF. Because, for his entire life, whether professional or political, Donald Trump has survived by the use of distraction. And if this starts to seriously go south on Trump, mark my words, John Bolton will start whispering in Trump’s ear about rogue ISIS cells in Norway, plotting a new 9/11, and it’ll be time to send in the Marines. It’s just Trump’s style.
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