Two soap operas starring Donald Trump are airing live today, and the leader of the free world is the villain in both. Each story is playing out live in two different parts of the world, with nonstop reporting and analysis. No matter what happens, today is certain to feature jaw-dropping episodes, shocking revelations, and insane tweets. By the time we put our phones down and go to sleep tonight, we will surely feel catapulted into a new chapter of understanding the real Donald Trump.
One story is playing out in Hanoi, where Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un are meeting before a second summit formally kicks off tomorrow. Evidence of Kim’s credentials as an oppressive dictator is overwhelming, as is his history of antagonism toward the United States. In a scathing December 2017 report, the International Bar Association War Crimes Committee urged prosecution against Kim for 10 out of 11 crimes against humanity. But as with everything else, Trump trusts his gut and ignores any fact that interferes with his desired outcome.
Trump met Kim at the first summit in Singapore in June 2018 after being smitten by an oversized letter targeted at his ego and personally delivered by Kim’s envoy. Trump claimed to have sized up Kim in a few seconds, professing his trust for the dictator. Kim returned the sentiment and the two became besties. Their long-distance romance blossomed through more letter writing, with a dreamy-eyed Trump telling a West Virginia crowd a few months later that “we fell in love.” The first summit failed to achieve its goal of denuclearization, so we now cringe as we wonder what Trump might give away in return for a “tremendous deal.”
The other story is unfolding in Washington DC, as Trump’s former fixer Michael Cohen testifies before the House Oversight Committee with a huge box of fireworks on his lap. Once the president’s BFF, Cohen is now reduced to “one of many lawyers who represented me (unfortunately),” according to an early-morning Trump tweet. We have already gotten a stunning preview of what Cohen is prepared to say. The topics range from illegal porn-star hush-money payments to coordination with WikiLeaks about Hillary’s Clinton’s emails. It is now clear that by the time Cohen is done testifying, there will not be any fireworks left on his lap.