From The Archives -- Trump's Very Bad Week

[ Posted Thursday, June 6th, 2024 – 16:01 UTC ]

Considering where we are today, it's kind of laughable to run that headline. Four years ago what constituted a "very bad week" for Trump would barely even move the needle today (especially after he was found guilty of 34 felonies, just last week).

But we run this column from June of 2020 just to remind everyone that "Supreme Court decision season" has already begun and there are a few of these that will directly impact Trump. And the Supreme Court has not always ruled in Trump's favor, as well. So who knows? Maybe they'll surprise us all... it's worth hoping for, at the very least.


Originally published June 18, 2020

To President Donald Trump, today's Supreme Court ruling was not actually about the hundreds of thousands of young people whose legal residence in this country hung on this court case. Instead, it was about one thing and one thing alone, which is pretty much the same thing that everything is about for Donald Trump: himself. After learning of the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision denying Trump the ability to strip legal protection from the "dreamers," Trump petulantly took to Twitter to ask: "Do you get the impression that the Supreme Court doesn't like me?" Once again, Trump reduced an issue of monumental importance to the level of schoolyard gossip (about him, of course). Maybe if the Supremes really really liked Trump, things would be different? Because that's obviously what it's all about, not all that legal mumbo-jumbo or hundreds of thousands of young people's lives.

Donald Trump is having a very bad week, obviously. He lost two major Supreme Court cases, which gave joy and delight to millions of affected people. He had to move the date of his first rally in months because of a holiday neither Trump nor anyone around him had ever heard of (which celebrates another monumental issue, the end of slavery in this country). John Bolton, whose politics could accurately be described as "to the right of Attila the Hun," is about to start selling his tell-all book to the public, which (as with every single one of all the other tell-all books about Trump) paints the president as a petulant, ill-informed man-baby who is unaware that Finland isn't part of Russia or that the United Kingdom is a nuclear power. Trump staged an executive order signing, which was supposed to somehow show leadership on police reform, but what he signed was so weak that Congress barely even noticed Trump's effort as they moved towards putting together their own bill. Also, Trump is apparently now obsessed with finding and bringing charges against whatever White House aide leaked the fact that he hid in a bunker during a protest outside his front door, because he knows full well how weak it made him look. The COVID-19 pandemic seems to be on the brink of a second wave of infections, this time centered mostly in the red states. And for the 13th straight week, more than a million Americans filed for unemployment. No wonder Joe Biden is dominating in each and every poll taken, both nationally and in the battleground states.

The most damning assertion in Bolton's new book is also the most believable, because even without being privy to high-level Oval Office discussions it is still plainly evident to anyone with eyes to see. Donald Trump has, according to Bolton, never made a single decision that wasn't calculated to win him re-election. That was the sole overriding factor that trumped (pun intended) every other consideration, including what would be best for the country. Precisely nobody was shocked at this revelation, since it merely confirms what everyone already knows about Trump.

No wonder Trump is itching to start up his rallies once again. He needs an outlet for his rage. He needs to air his increasingly-long list of grievances to his worshipful admirers. His planetary-sized ego has not been getting the adulation it requires, which is probably why the Trump tantrums have been increasing in regularity, of late. He misses the cheering crowds who will agree with anything he says, no matter how insane or unmoored from reality. And after the very bad week Trump's been having, Saturday's Tulsa rally will likely be even more unhinged than usual.

Democrats should welcome this development. Seeing Trump unleash his id in front of screaming fans with no script or possible contradictions (from aides or from generals or from "nasty" journalists) almost guarantees that Trump will say something monumentally embarrassing. He'll probably say several, in fact. All will be made-for-television-ads-against-him moments, no doubt. The hardest thing the Biden campaign will have to decide is which one of Trump's many outrageous statements should be used in an ad first.

At the least, Trump is almost certain to appear wildly out of touch with what is going on in the country. He's pretty much the only one fighting renaming military bases that currently honor generals who fought against the United States. He really has no clue what the ongoing protests are about. He talks about the protesters as "rioters" and "thugs" and (this week) as "terrorists" and "criminals," without ever even slightly acknowledging what they're protesting about. So whatever he has to say about African-Americans in Tulsa is bound to be controversial, at a minimum. He's already tried to take credit for informing the country of the importance of Juneteenth, which is downright laughable (but entirely consistent with Trump's view that everything is always about him). Trump will likely also vow to renew his efforts to strip legal protections from the dreamers, after today's Supreme Court loss. The problem for Trump on all of these issues (and many more) is that the American people overwhelmingly support a different viewpoint. Large majorities agree with the grievances of the protesters in the streets and agree that policing in this country needs major reforms. Similar majorities agree that the dreamers should be given permanent status. And there are few left who are still arguing that the Confederacy is worth honoring and memorializing. On issue after issue, Trump is giving more and more people plenty of reasons not to vote for him.

Trump's worldview is a simple one: you're either for him or you're against him. That's pretty much it. This is what leads him to the conspiratorial mindset every time there is new evidence that the world does not actually revolve around him. Trump recently mused that all those people wearing masks out there were doing so as a personal insult to him, to make a political point. This is because he cannot wrap his mind around the concept that anyone would ever do anything for altruistic reasons. The very notion is a foreign one to Trump's way of thinking. It has been reported that hand sanitizer and masks will be offered to everyone attending Trump's Tulsa rally, but I'd be willing to bet that virtually no one in the crowd will be caught on camera wearing a mask. Trump has made it a macho thing not to wear a mask, so anyone who does will likely be ridiculed as a wimp by everyone around them.

Saturday's rally will really kick off the general election season. This is just the start of the whole process, in other words. The election is more than four months away, meaning that there'll be plenty of time for more Trump rallies and more off-script gaffes for Democrats to politically exploit. So what I'll be wondering this Saturday is not so much what Trump will say at the end of his very bad week, but what he'll be saying in October, after what will hopefully be a few very bad months for him.

-- Chris Weigant


Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant


One Comment on “From The Archives -- Trump's Very Bad Week”

  1. [1] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    just for anyone who cares to take a long read, Karen Friedman Agnifilo, formerly of the NYC district attorney's office (but who never worked with DA Bragg) wrote a fairly scathing rebuttal to any claims of impropriety.

    Read it here


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