Donald Trump is sorta, kinda, maybe trying to take Hurricane Irma seriously. He’s retweeted a few proper messages from authorities to try to help get the word out. He’s also been craven enough to go on vacation this weekend while the mega-storm is expected to make landfall, and drag his entire cabinet along with him just so he could be seen leading them in a faux-preparedness meeting. But his late night tweet on Saturday about Irma was confounding enough that it didn’t exactly inspire much confidence.
Here’s what Trump tweeted just an hour before midnight on Saturday: “The U.S. Coast Guard, FEMA and all Federal and State brave people are ready. Here comes Irma. God bless everyone!” It sounds potentially appropriate if you read it quickly and don’t put much thought into it, which is probably how he came up with it. But even in the face of a deadly storm, the internet couldn’t help but belittle Trump for his ineptness.
The trouble: Trump said something as doofus-like as “Here comes Irma” and then followed it with “God bless everyone” in a way that made it sound like those two things were somehow supposed to go together. Katrina Stevenson, who is in Irma’s path, replied with “This Tampa dweller swears if he shows up for a photo op with a big truck, we will pelt him with rotted Cuban sandwiches and bufo toads!” For the record, we don’t recommend literally doing this.
Sarah Smith took offense at Donald Trump’s decision to invoke religion while talking about the storm: “Gawd, I hope your evangelicals didn’t forget to activate the ‘POTUS Shield’ for Irma.” There was another respondent, Judie Hall, who summed it up thusly: “Here comes Irma? What is this, a sit-com?” As per usual, Trump might have been better off not tweeting at all. Finally, Zack Farley said what we were all thinking: “Here comes Irma? – Who the hell writes something like this?”
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report