If there is a topic we have covered here, possibly to a fault, it is Trump’s precipitous decline, especially since the end of summer. The pressure is getting to him, leading to real consequences and danger. The net is catching up, White House aides have noticed, and no one is sure where it might all end. What seems new is a growing consensus that things cannot continue on this path.
Wednesday was not just the worst day of Trump’s presidency, it might have been the worst self-inflicted day in anyone’s presidency, at least in the modern era. On Wednesday, Trump had his lunch handed to him by an overwhelming vote in the House rebuking his actions in Syria. Shortly thereafter, he had his temper-tantrum in which he called Nancy Pelosi a “third rate politician.” The meeting produced the most iconic photograph of his presidency, and resulted in a Democratic walkout. Later that day Trump issued the bizarre letter to Turkish president Erdogan, a letter that did not move Erdogan in his insistence upon total victory, and no real ceasefire.
A new article in the Atlantic chronicled the decline and the week. It is stuffed with quotes from across the political spectrum, including White House aides, that tell of a body-politic that understands we are in totally uncharted waters. It appears no one knows exactly what to do, only that something must be done.
“I think what we’re viewing, if you think about the human side of it, is the man has no life. He just has no life,” the person close to him told me.
This is particularly dangerous in a man known for impulsiveness, increasingly in isolation, due in large part to the “lack of a life” referenced above. He has no real close friends.
At least one associate has confronted Trump recently about his judgment, specifically his decision to repeatedly attack the Biden family. Isn’t it unseemly for a president to target Joe Biden’s son Hunter? Wouldn’t it be smarter, at least, to outsource this sort of attack to someone else?
According to a person close to the president, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss private conversations, Trump’s explanation was that he acts as any normal person might, and that he won’t be moved by what he calls “political correctness.” “You don’t get it,” Trump said
This is dangerous. Trump firmly believes he’s acting as a “normal person might” in a job where “what a normal person might do” is well short of the standard required to meet the pressures of the office. It is also noteworthy that the above quote references an “associate,” someone inside, on the Trump team, who confronted Trump about some of Trump’s worst instincts. Rather than listen, Trump dismissed it, it was the associate who “didn’t get it.” Presidents are supposed to at least consider what is supposed to be top advice from the best in the country. Not now.
The entire article is a must read. The article near forces the reader to embrace the danger we face as a nation.
I do admit, it is not like the situation is a giant secret.
NEW —> Trump’s season of weakness: A president who prizes strength enters key stretch in a fragile state
My latest on the crises engulfing Trump and his administrationhttps://t.co/YBsnzoN4Pa
— Philip Rucker (@PhilipRucker) October 19, 2019
Nor are things going to get better any time soon. Indeed, the pressure is sure to get worse over the next two weeks.
He is looking at an impending government shutdown over the budget:
“With no progress reported on any of the 12 spending bills, the risk grows each week of a [government shutdown before Thanksgiving] that would be far more sweeping than the 35-day partial shutdown earlier this year.” https://t.co/o3sd9daB72
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) October 19, 2019
At least some taxes, perhaps only state, perhaps all of them, are near certain to be released soon:
17/ The good guys will have Trump’s taxes in a matter of days, or, worse-case scenario, a few months. The taxes expose him as a serial mob money launderer and tax cheat. He cannot survive releasing them. They are a Van Helsing heart-stake.https://t.co/UUeoKP6RaL
— Greg Olear (@gregolear) October 19, 2019
Some financial documents studied seem to show discrepancies that would be evidence of fraud.
– Rental income at TIHT that was twice as big on loan docs as tax forms in 2017
– Occupancy for 40 Wall that was 10-20 percentage points different – despite being measured just 5 days apart.
— Heather Vogell (@hvogell) October 18, 2019
We are likely to see more and more reporting like this:
— Johnny Rizzo (@JohnnyRizzo1) October 19, 2019
And, as we reported earlier, the world seems on the verge of lashing out against Trump as being partly responsible for war crimes and ethnic cleansing, in a situation brought on by Trump’s policies.
If this is only partly true, it’s a further condemnation of our foreign policy and treatment of our Kurdish partners. If even partly true, one could conclude we are aligned as the Turks, Syrians and Russians execute an annihilation campaign. https://t.co/o1cxfdMrFd
— Mark Hertling (@MarkHertling) October 19, 2019
So here we stand, looking out at a landscape that no one knows how to navigate. The only positive news must be taken with a grain of salt large enough for a cow to lick; that Republicans seem to be caught in the avalanche and are flung in all different directions, no longer in lockstep behind Trump. However, as the pace quickens, with new evidence coming out by the day, and the undeniable deterioration, it is increasingly likely that Republicans’ own political fortunes dim unless they step in. Done sooner rather than later allows the Republican party to reorganize a real run, with another candidate, for the 2020 election.
But it is terrifying. Anything can happen. The only thing we can count upon is that we’re unlikely to see the worst consequences coming ahead of time. Who thought we’d be talking war crimes only a month ago?
Let’s hope that we’re at the end game now. I have my doubts. Regardless, if one just peruses the net for an hour, the inescapable conclusion is that the people paying the most attention, even Trump-supporters at Fox News, all understand that we’ve entered new territory, for the worse.
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