Tag Archives: Donald Trump

From the annals of Beltway journalism

With coronavirus cases up eleven thousand in twenty-four hours and climate change accelerating, it remains a comfort to know Maggie Haberman’s stenographic skills sharpen publication after publication:

In the meantime, Mr. Trump has spent his days toggling between his White House residence and the Oval Office, watching television coverage about the final weeks of his presidency. His mood is often bleak, advisers say, though he is not raising his voice in anger, despite the impression left by his tweets, which are often in capital letters.

Two or three dozen times since 2016 Haberman has cobbled letters into words arranging themselves into sentences that illustrate An Angry President; a Cornered President; a President Surrounded by Enemies. The following sentence is journalistic malpractice: “By dominating the story of his exit from the White House, he hopes to keep his millions of supporters energized and engaged for whatever comes next.” Repeating rumors by thwarted White House aides without attribution in November 2020! We accuse Trump of never learning. How can we be disappointed when the press corps serve as models?

From the annals of MAGAism

(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)[/caption]

Thanks to Tropical Storm Eta, I had my first conversation with a Trumper this morning. My upstairs neighbor, the alcoholic and emphysemic with the MAGA flag flapping like a caught fish from a skiff, bumped into me, masked, as he went for his bike. We bantered in Spanish about our experiences with last night’s incredible rain.

“My wife almost told me to take down the flag because she was afraid it would fly away,” he said. “But I’m keeping it up as long as I can.”

“Uh huh.”

“Not until we settle this fraud.”

“Did you vote?”

“Stood in line for an hour two weeks ago.” He beamed like a guy who found a fresh pack of Schlitz next to his toilet.

“If fraud happened, why wouldn’t we discount the House and Senate races? They’re on the same ballot, you might remember.”

He gave me the abject, stupefied look of a guy who wants to think of a comeback but can’t. I said good morning and walked away.

We’re on the brink

As of 1:03 p.m., Joseph Robinette Biden looks like he will take the oath in January. In his honor, I have mixed a martini for lunch. No one outside the Beltway thought he’d make it this far. I dismissed him as a querulous fossil in fall 2019 — I dismissed him in  2008 when Barack Obama chose him as running mate. But Americans — we Americans — chose an old white guy to wipe the stain of Trumpism, and so far we have spoken resoundingly. We survived Tuesday night. When Florida turned red, I fell into a slough of despond. By the time I went to bed hours later I made note of the fact that Trump hadn’t flipped a single state whereas Biden looked like he’d done so in Arizona and Georgia, not to mention winning the Democratic redoubts in the Upper Midwest. Continue reading

What else do I have to say? Election Day 2020

6:32 a.m. One thing looks certain: Trump did a smashing job courting the Hispanic vote in southern Texas but especially in Miami-Dade County. It’s probable Florida might’ve flipped if MDC had come through for Biden. Now I wake up with Donna Shalala and my congressperson Debbie Mucarsel-Powell defeated. No one expected these outcomes.

6:27 a.m. When I went to bed, Arizona sat in the Dem column, comfortably, according to FOX News and the AP. CNN and MSNBC haven’t called the state. The outstanding mail-in vote keeps news agencies from calling Nevada.

6:26 a.m. Good morning. I went to bed fifteen minutes after my last post. I slept about three hours before my dayslong problem of adjusting to last Sunday’s hour change combined with nerves yanked me up.

12:33 a.m. “Atlanta won’t finish its count tonight. Election workers in Fulton County, who were counting absentee ballots, went home for the night. A water line break delayed the count” – NYT

12:32 a.m. In North Carolina, by the way, the 75,000-vote margin may get affected by the number of postmarked ballots that the state will accept after today.

12:09 a.m. Hi. I’m still here. The big news: FOX News, good at this sort of thing ever since Megyn Kelly clopped down to visit the nerds who called Ohio for Barack Obama in 2012, called Arizona for Biden. Millions of uncounted votes remain in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. So we may go into this tomorrow — the Dems’ worst nightmare considering the president’s bluster.

10:18 p.m. I’m still optimistic because the crucial non-battleground states haven’t flipped yet. Nothing’s flipped yet we haven’t expected.

9:28 p.m. Trump improving margins among Hispanic voters depresses me; Biden’s improving margins over Clinton among white voters in the Midwest surprises me.

9:06 p.m. If you see a gap in coverage, I’ve taken a (late) dinner break. Wine too.

8:53 p.m. What I’m learning: y’all care about the damn NYT needle more than I do. I’ve never looked at it.

8:50 p.m. Good news: Daniella Levine Cava defeats Esteban “Steve” Bovo to become Miami-Dade County’s first female mayor.

8:27 p.m. Should Florida fall to Trump, which I’ve never doubted, I know — I’ve written about it — the statewide party has work to do organizing.

8:08 p.m. I never counted Florida in the win county, as I’ve said repeatedly. The only genuine surprise is the extent of Democratic erosion in MDC. But we were here in 2018 too.

7:58 p.m. Looks like Florida as a whole’s doing better than expected for Dems…except my home county.

7:54 p.m. https://twitter.com/NateSilver538/status/1323790703646920706

7:40 p.m. I hasten to point out: the mail-in votes are not counted yet in Florida. What we see now are EV totals.

7:31 p.m. Broward just put Biden ahead in Florida while we wait for Orange County (Orlando) and Leon (Tallahassee).

7:26 p.m. Duval and Palm Beach County also doing well for Biden in EV.

7:17 p.m. At this moment, though, Miami-Dade is underperforming.

7:14 p.m. Broward County looks like it’s overperforming.

7:06 p.m. Damn. Biden at 53. 6 to Trump’s 53.4 in EV in Pinellas, which Trump won in 2016.

7:02 p.m. Pasco County, north of Tampa-St. Petersburg, sees a drop in Trump’s totals in EV. Same as Brevard and Lake.

7 p.m. Indiana. Well, yeah.

6:57 p.m. Three minutes.

6:50 p.m. I am where I need to be. Let the earnest blogging begin.

5:58 p.m. Ah, at last: the sapience of that cadaverous non-entity James Carville, who like Karl Rove gets cable TV contracts because no one born after 1996 can remember their promising moments.

5:30 p.m. I will of course post often about Florida. A little while ago I noted promising results. For example: in Duval County, home of Jacksonville, one of the few remaining conservative big cities, GOP turnout is slowing down; Trump narrowly won in 2016, suggesting the red tinge was turning blue. Better, Miami-Dade County Elections insists it will release the data of one million voters by 7:30 p.m. Nate Silver calculates that the GOP needs to hit more 3 percent turnout to feel confident about victory; without the most populous counties counted yet, the GOP is at 1.8 percent.

5:28 p.m. When Florida flipped, the Blue Wall crumbled, and Pennsylvania looked uncertain four years ago tonight, I turned to my host and mumbled, “I think I need to go home.” Confident to the point of cocky, I felt as gutted as millions of other Americans. Today I feel as calm as yesterday.

5:26 p.m. The first gin and tonic mixed. I plan to take it easy tonight, as I tend to anyway because my body is programmed to awaken before the cock crows. Should Joe Biden will, I’ll courteously ask the host of this evening’s fête if she can open the good scotch.

Let it begin tonight

Tuesday dawned with cloudy skies but a continuous northeasterly breeze. Our first cold front is nothing of the sort, but we’ll take low humidity and open windows and so will you. I walked farther now that I can read at the same time (Michael Hiltzik’s history of the New Deal, apt for these times, I’m told). The polling station at Rockway Park, a converted party room, had a four-person queue this morning; whether this is typical I’m not sure. The state’s busiest early voting site, Westchester Regional Library, had more Trump revelers on Sunday afternoon than people in line. Unless you’re Black and living in the northern part of the county, you have likely voted. It is done. Nine million Floridians have cast ballots: 63 percent of registered voters, a staggering number. Continue reading

Donald Trump and Hispanic machismo

A decade ago, three weeks from an election that, apart from packing Barack Obama’s first term priorities in ice, would show Democrats the peril of ignoring local and state races, a relative and I got into about, what else, the president’s socialist tendencies. Obama wasn’t socialist, he assured me; he was a, right, fellow-traveler. Why else did he appoint all those czars?! Hillary Clinton, I learned, would’ve known how to handle legislation. Hillary had balls. My relative, in case I needed an illustration, curled the forefinger and thumb of each hand and dangled them below his crotch. Continue reading

Trumpism: trolling libs is the point

Some context: on my morning walks, I elongate my route by stepping into less than promising cul-de-sacs, one of which I call MAGA Alley. In June, two houses closest to the main avenue already sported yard signs for Trump and Esteban “Steve” Bovo, the so-called “conservative candidate for major” and at that point running in the primary. This grisly miniature of suburban despair four months later is a veritable gift shop for Trump apparel. I walk past this house every day. This flag went up in the last twenty-four hours. Continue reading

Donald Trump: It didn’t have to be this way

A liberal by conviction and inclination, I have parts of myself I conceal. Pessimism is cheap, easy to affect. Let me proffer the following admission: I didn’t expect Donald Trump to fuck up the presentation of his COVID diagnosis this epically. If he’d gone out of sight, or at most done a Reagan-esque thumb- up from a hospital window; if he’d wished the First Lady well; if he’d conceded the seriousness of his symptoms to show his empathy for the 210,000 Americans who died because they lacked his access to brain-putrefying steroids — if he’d done these simple things and more, perhaps called the people whom he made ill, then the press might have at this point been shaming Americans for wishing he’d die. Perhaps Nancy Pelosi herself would show up in a HAZMAT suit to pray with him, like Tip ‘n’ Ronnie did after the latter’s shooting. If he’d done these things, he might have gained a few points in the debate. Continue reading

Why I will vote for Joe Biden

Forget not wanting to vote for him — I never liked Joe Biden. Not as a garrulous senator, a smarmy vice president, or a querulous candidate did he impress me as anything but how forty years of public life enfeeble the mind; it’s as if he thought ubiquity and wisdom were synonymous. A serial fabulist, he has hoped a torrent of words obscures his intentions. I thought Bernie Sanders was likelier to win the nomination, thus the presidency. Continue reading

‘The first family came in wearing masks, but they took them off’

Separating the stupid from the malicious has broken the sharp political analysts who haven’t treated the Trump administration as normal. The Washington Post‘s account of how the “debut” of Judge Amy Coney Barrett last Saturday turned into a superspreader event commingles them: Continue reading

Can we do this? Joe Biden vs Donald Trump

10:31 p.m. A mistake to do this. I can’t. I’d rather read Rita Dove and Jose Saramago. But the president just admitted he wants Judge Amy Coney Barrett to “settle disputes.”

10:18 p.m. I can’t think of a single GOP president since Reagan who knows how to mention forests without mentioning kindling, the health benefits of carbon dioxide, and other twaddle. “Beautiful water” the president mentioned.

10:08 p.m. I once followed him: https://twitter.com/sullydish/status/1311121042614738946

10.01 p.m. There is no point to a debate with this sociopath as president; to allow it to happen is a fucking failure of the media.

9:46. Chris Wallace alludes to the president’s “free market” approach — lol.

9:38 p.m. I just heard Trump lament alcoholism and “drugs” as a result of a shutdown.

9:34 p.m. It’s stunning listening to a chief executive applaud (a) rallies (b) not wearing masks (c) deriding his science officers.

9:27 p.m. I have no idea how this will “play” on TV, but the master of television can’t stop yapping.

9:08 p.m. “Will you shut up, man?” Biden snaps at the president. Damn.

9:06 p.m. Biden sounds like his age, Trump sounds like an asshole. “I’m debating you, not him,” he coldly barks at Chris Wallace.

9:04 p.m. I understand Biden not wanting to freak out his moderate base about expanding the Court. But he lands on the Affordable Care Act — good.

9:02 p.m. A survivor of the Reagan era — indeed, one of the last — Chris Wallace is the only decent interrogator the president has faced. He looks terrified.

8:58 p.m. David Plouffe has the cold-blooded mien of a local Progressive Insurance branch.

8:56 p.m. The Trump Children enter the room, fully masked as they never have.

8:46 p.m. I dislike Joe Biden. I have conservative relatives who “like” him more than I do. But here we are. American politics, cursed with the Electoral College and a post-Watergate system that rewards centrism after populist campaigns have had their say, have made him my standard bearer. Now circumstances have forced me to buy signs. Imagine this. Continue reading