Suffice it to say that it hasn’t been a good week for Donald Trump, if it doesn’t go down in history as the one that unraveled his presidency and much of the GOP along with it. He was out of the country while his former fixer Michael Cohen was called in to testify before Congress – further confirming many of the details about the Moscow Trump Tower project, Roger Stone, and Stormy Daniels, potentially giving House Democrats the answers they need to subpoena Trump’s taxes, and pushing Trump’s fiercest congressional loyalists over the edge.
It’s easy to forget that Alex Acosta’s Jeffrey Epstein scandal was the news focus only a few days ago – or that the Mueller investigation was supposed to have wrapped up this week. The scandals that once dominated the news cycle for a week are coming daily now, fast and furious with no signs of slowing down. This could have been a relatively good week for Donald: no more probe, and a successful summit with the brutal dictator he allegedly fell in love with, where he could at least claim to have made some progress meeting with North Korea, and the media would have given him the benefit of the doubt. Neither of those things happened.
There were some warning signs earlier this week, when former CIA official Jeremy Bash spoke on MSNBC about his suspicion that Donald Trump would cave even further to Kim Jong-Un than he did in Singapore last summer. After all, Trump badly needed a win, so he’d be eager to please, with fewer fans willing to buy commemorative coins from this summit. Kim Jong-Un, by comparison, has managed to get a seat at the table with the United States and hasn’t destroyed a single missile since the last summit – so why start now? Sure enough, he expressed some vague interest in denuclearization yet again, and Trump left the summit saying it doesn’t have to happen in a hurry.
The summit turned out even worse than we anticipated – ending two hours early with no written agreement. Naturally, Donald Trump blames it on North Korea asking for a total lift of sanctions. Perhaps even he knows that any deal made after the unproductive Singapore talks would be scrutinized heavily. Perhaps he was overwhelmed by the news back home. Either way, time is clearly no longer on Donald Trump’s side.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making