In a desperate, selfish attempt to remain both relevant and involved, President Donald Trump has insisted on being the “star” of the daily White House coronavirus press briefings, see-sawing wildly between anger, whining, and demanding that the United States be reopened ASAP like some sort of spoiled two-year-old who has issued a demand and been denied.
No doubt Trump thinks his performance at these briefings is helpful to his long-term prospects, especially as they relate to his bid for a second term in office, which, according to recent polls, seems unlikely as the American death toll from COVID-19 passes the 10,000 mark with the worst yet to come, medical experts warn.
However, a new report from the Washington Post suggests that Trump’s daily pressers are actually harming him and providing ample ammunition for those who are working to make sure Trump isn’t reelected:
“As Democrats escalate their general-election campaign against the president, they have targeted his failure to act urgently to deflect the damage the coronavirus is wreaking over lives and the economy, as he brushed aside intelligence briefings and warnings from health officials while holding fundraisers and gathering thousands of his followers at rallies.
“Their greatest ammunition? Trump’s own comments, aired daily in the marathon coronavirus briefings where he commands center stage.”
As we’ve seen over the past week, even Trump voters say he acted too slowly to control the virus after it was discovered in the U.S. In one week’s time, the percentage of Trump voters saying he didn’t do enough early on increased by 17 points.
The 2020 election is now a referendum on Donald Trump and his ability to handle two major crises: Coronavirus and the economy. And he’s failing miserably on both, the Post notes:
“While Trump has attempted to mock the Democratic delegate leader Joe Biden as ‘sleepy’ and not up to the task of being president, the general election is quickly turning into a referendum on Trump’s handling of twin national crises, each of which is worsening rapidly just seven months before voters head to the polls.”
If November becomes all about how Trump has done as a crisis manager — and how could it be anything but? — Donald Trump is political toast.
Even former New Jersey governor Chris Christie (R) says Trump is in such deep shit that it doesn’t even matter who gets the Democratic nomination:
“In my view, politically, nothing else matters. And, in fact, I have never seen a time when an opponent is more irrelevant. And that’s not an insult to Vice President Biden.
“But in the end, the American people are going to decide, has the president of the United States stood up to this crisis and done right by them and protected their lives and their property, or hasn’t he?”
There was a time when Donald Trump was the living embodiment of a “Teflon candidate.” Nothing stuck to him. But those days are gone. Now Trump is his own worst enemy. And those press conferences are digging the hole he’s in even deeper.