We all saw it coming. At the end of a week in which a few things went marginally right for him, but a whole lot of things went wildly wrong for him, Donald Trump woke up this morning and promptly had a meltdown that was far-out even by his histrionic standards. His ranting ranged from demanding the resignation of a U.S. Senator, to randomly defending a state, to inventing weird new phrases into the English language – and in the process he may have given something away.
Major news outlets claim to have twenty or more different sources confirming some of the accusations made against Dr. Ronny Jackson, Trump’s nominee to lead the VA. Jackson has now withdrawn himself from consideration, which logically means that at least some (if not necessarily all) of the numerous accusations against him must be true. If they were all false, he would have remained in contention and let all the facts come out. The Secret Service is disputing one of the accusations about Jackson drunkenly beating on a woman’s door in the middle of the night on an overseas trip. Naturally, Trump is zeroing in on this in berserk fashion.
Trump demanded this morning that U.S. Senator Jon Tester of Montana must resign. Trump appears to believe that Tester is the one who made the accusations, when this was never the case. After the accusations surfaced in the media, Tester and others on the vetting committee merely announced that they were looking into the allegations to see if they were true. Nonetheless, Trump is insisting that Tester has “absolutely devastated the wonderful Jackson family” while adding “Admiral Jackson is the kind of man that those in Montana would most respect and admire, and now, for no reason whatsoever, his reputation has been shattered.”
The whole thing sounded like a love letter from Donald Trump to Ronny Jackson. It was oddly personal, for a guy like Trump who typically comes off as a sociopath. That was weird enough. What may be more telling is how obsessed Trump is with the idea of defeating Jon Tester in November. This is a hint that someone has done the math and explained to Trump that he’s going to lose the House, and that if he can’t flip Tester’s seat, he’ll probably lose the Senate as well. That puts him much closer to impeachment. Not shockingly, Trump is still ranting about Tester, seven hours after he started. He seems to care more about Tester than he does about Jackson.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report