No Virtual Trump

“A Republic, if you can keep it.”

  • President Donald Trump on steroids: How scary is that?
  • Of course, Trump wouldn’t agree to a virtual debate. Public health, including protecting those necessarily around him, is hardly a priority. He needs a bully pulpit–which doesn’t lend itself to virtual arrogance and sniping. Recall how Trump made his literal entrance on to the 2016 presidential-candidate scene. No way would Donald and Melania Trump have merely exited the elevator at Trump Tower—as opposed to descending, in deus ex machina fashion, via a high-profile, optics-augmenting escalator with fans and media beseechingly awaiting. An actual “debate” is not what a reality-TV narcissist does, but an in-person event can accommodate the art of the unhinged performance.   
  • Veep Debate: Without saying so, a key goal in the vice-presidential debate was to not look anything like the embarrassing, chaotic presidential version. Mission accomplished, however subterranean low the bar. Neither challenger Kamala Harris nor Vice President Mike Pence had a game plan that featured the upstaging of decorum. But Pence, by interrupting in a civil fashion, did upstage Trump by seeming normal.

The other dual goal was to look like someone who could top the ticket in 2024. Harris has history-making demographics, a sharp prosecutorial mind, a progressive agenda and political charisma. Pence does not look like the second coming of Benito Mussolini.

Memorable lines: “They’re coming for you.”—Harris on the millions of Americans who will lose out if the ACA is repealed.  “Stop playing politics with people’s lives.”—Pence with a straight face. But no answer from Harris on the question of “court packing,” and no answer from Pence on the peaceful transition of power. And nothing but rhetorical pivots by either candidate on whether they’ve had succession conversations with their septuagenarian running mates. You know Harris has.

  • “I feel like perfect.”—That was, like, the imperfectionist-in-chief, Donald Trump.
  • “An intervention.” What House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called for by those around Trump, because “something’s wrong.”
  • Beyond ironic for the one who equates the Biden candidacy with the “Trojan Horse of socialism” to be the most prominent beneficiary of socialized medicine in the United States.
  • “Don’t Cry for Me, MAGA Minions”: The super spreader-in-chief on his White House Blue Room Evita/Fuhrer balcony, rallying a crowd of cult fans practicing social proximity.
  • Here’s the question some Democrats on the Judiciary Committee would surely have liked to have asked Amy Coney Barrett, even if it is better suited for “Saturday Night Live.” “To what degree are you—in the midst of an honorable and distinguished law career—embarrassed by having been nominated by the most unscrupulous, divisive, immoral, vile and unlawful president in the nation’s history?”
  • “Blexit”: The Trump campaign plan to encourage black and Latino voters to leave the Democratic Party and become GOPsters.
  • “(Biden’s) the camouflage to get Kamala Harris in. He’s the camouflage to get Bernie Sanders in … AOC.”—That was Donald Trump Jr. during a Tampa stop of his “Fighters Against Socialism” bus tour.
  • “I’m immune.”—President Donald Trump. “We’re not.”—America’s democratic republic.
  • Out of an abundance of caution, voters should not even think of re-electing Trump.

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