What kind of Republican presidential candidate holds rallies (of the Nuremberg-variety) in October of an election year where he brags about the kind of poll numbers he’s getting from West Virginia and Utah? What kind of presidential candidate is still obsessed with crowd size from his inauguration three and one half whole years after the inauguration ended? What kind of presidential candidate complains about a worldwide pandemic, sarcastically saying, “COVID! COVID! COVID!,” in the midst of a rally, as if the death of 232,084 Americans (as I write this, with more than a thousand deaths in the last 24 hours) is becoming tedious? I’ll tell you what kind. Donald Trump. And he’s losing.
Donald Trump’s desperate hunt for red October is a pathetic signal that he’s losing and he knows it. The stale slogan to “Make America Great Again” is redolent of an outsider looking in. But Trump is no longer the outsider. He’s been in charge for almost four years and every one of those four years have been unique disasters.
In 2017 Trump showed us who he loves when sided with white supremacists at Charlottesville. In 2018 he showed us who he’s working for when he betrayed America’s intelligence communities by siding with Vladimir Putin at Helsinki. In 2019 he showed us to what depths he was willing to sink when he tried to steal the 2020 election by collusion with Ukraine — and he got impeached for his efforts. In 2020 Trump has shown us that he’s tired of the pandemic and prefers to declare an unearned victory over it rather than do any actual work. Meanwhile the United States has twenty percent of the world’s pandemic deaths with only 2.4 percent of the world’s population.
Meanwhile a religious fascist has been confirmed to the Supreme Court of the United States, meanwhile another person of color has been summarily executed by “peace officers” in Philadelphia, meanwhile one thousand and thirty-nine Americans have died in the last 24 hours from COVID-19. Donald Trump’s biggest worry these days is that Leslie Stahl didn’t sufficiently coddle him with softball questions like the ones she gave Joe Biden, whom she didn’t even interview. As usual, everything is about Donald Trump. For Trump the presidency has been one continuous appeasement of his ego, and he clearly doesn’t give a crap about anything else.
Donald Trump’s hunt for red October will be a failure, a bankruptcy, like everything else he’s done in his pathetic life. But November is coming. Let’s give him a November he will never forget. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.
Robert Harrington is an American expat living in Britain. He is a portrait painter.