Because most Americans understand that Donald Trump negligently and dishonestly got 200,000 Americans killed on his way to getting himself infected with the plague, there was probably never any opportunity for him to get a sympathy bump in the polls for being ill. But even if there was an opportunity, Trump is already finding a way to blow it.
If Trump and his doctors were simply willing to be honest about the seriousness of his condition, then the story would be that Trump is ill. But instead Trump has his doctors out there painting a bizarre picture of Trump somehow being in great condition, while also taking one experimental and dangerous coronavirus drug after another. The average person understands that such risky treatments are a tipoff that Trump is in significantly worse condition than is being let on – and they don’t appreciate being lied to about what the odds are of the President of the United States living or dying.
Trump and his political advisers are also playing games when it comes to his condition. Last night they released photos of him propped up at a table, supposedly signing important documents – but the whole thing was so poorly staged, they had him signing a blank sheet of paper. So this kind of nonsense becomes the story, and again, the public doesn’t like being jerked around about what kind of condition the President is in while he’s fighting off a deadly plague.
In other words, Donald Trump is blowing it. Instead of letting the story be that he’s sick and hoping he gets a sympathy bump in the polls, Trump is narcissistically trying to convince the public he’s healthier than he is. In so doing, he’s ensuring that the lies and the coverup are the story, and no one is going to feel sympathetic toward him over that. He’ll be lucky if he emerges from the hospital with the same ugly poll numbers he had before he went in.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report