You well remember waking up on 11/09, if you went to sleep at all, and finding yourself down the rabbit hole with the rest of us. The election of Donald Trump knocked the political world off its axis and nothing has been the same. Night became day, black is white, up is down. So it should come as no shock to you that in contravention of the laws of political physics, Trump seeks a second term and of course he doesn’t have any plan or policy to share with us. Why would he? This is all about staying out of jail and staying on TV. Trump has an ego the size of a gas-giant planet and this is all about juicing that ego. He didn’t run for the job, he ran for the attention. He hates the freaking job. Windsor Mann, The Bulwark:
Trump is not interested in the actual job of the presidency. He’s interested in the attention the presidency affords him.
After his election, he discovered that running for president was easier and more fun than being president. Which is why he continued to hold campaign rallies even after he was elected. He wasn’t campaigning for anything. He just liked hearing crowds screaming his name. Unlike most politicians, who campaign in order to govern, Trump campaigns as a way to avoid governing. […]
Instead of holding rallies for the purpose of getting elected, Trump wants to get elected so he can keep having rallies. […]
Trump cares more about his Twitter account than people’s lives. It took him months to respond to the pandemic and a few weeks to be bored by it. Yet, two days after Twitter flagged two of his tweets, Trump signed an executive order targeting social media companies and said he would shut down Twitter if he could.
Instead of using Twitter to advance his political agenda, Trump uses the presidency to advance his Twitter agenda.
And don’t believe that he’s going to resign. Not unless Vladimir signs off on it, and I wouldn’t make book on that. No, he’s going down in flames via the same media that got him where he got in the first place. Except the second time around is a whole lot different than the first. Right now Trump is depending on the base, Diamond and Silk, and the big brain on Brad Parscale and his Death Star to bring the bacon home. Rick Wilson, Daily Beast:
Trump’s 2016 effort could afford to be a shambolic circus; nothing was on the line. He never expected to win and so the rotating cast of campaign managers didn’t really matter. Now, the fear is rising that the bet on a base-only election isn’t playing out.
For Jared and Brad, the vultures are circling the Trump effort, from Karl Rove and his merry band to the Ike Turner of Trump world, Corey Lewandowski. Steve Bannon and pro-am baby daddy Jason Miller are back in the loop. Trump got the band back together, but it feels more like a Team of Yokos than a working unit. They seem to spend the majority of their time talking shit about each other rather than running a campaign. You love to see it. […]
But for all this pain, and for all his rising fear, Trump will never quit this race.
Even as he grows to loathe the burdens of the presidency more with each passing day, Trump realizes that without the power of his office (and the sword and shield of Bill Barr to protect him), every conceivable chicken will come home to roost. His is not a future in cosseted luxury but billion-dollar legal bills, the slow betrayal of everyone around him and the destruction of what remains of his vaunted brand.
Trump is trapped in this campaign, and we’re trapped with him. Desperate, pinned animals are still dangerous as hell. Don’t imagine for a moment there’s a limit on what he’ll do or say to win, no matter how bad it gets.
The presidency is a hard job for the men — so far — who have done it. Thomas Jefferson called it “a painful and thankless office” and said it brought him “nothing but unceasing drudgery and daily loss of friends.” George Washington said the presidency gave him “feelings not unlike those of a culprit who is going to the place of his execution.” William Howard Taft said the White House was “the lonesomest place in the world.” Warren Harding called it “a prison. I can’t get away from the men who dog my footsteps. I am in jail.” Now if these gentlemen are saying this, and they sought the presidency, at least Jefferson and Washington did, with all their hearts, because they sought to make a difference in the world with a bold new plan of government, can you imagine what the game show host must feel? He called the White House “a dump,” remember?
No, Trump is trapped. Trapped by the need to feed his own addiction and pump up his insecurities with the cheers and the social media likes, and the need to stay out of another form of federal housing altogether. We’re stuck with this election, but it’s all for the best. Having him go down in flames in a landslide is the best way to deal with this, better than impeachment, better than him resigning. And take heart from the fact that as miserable as we are, Trump would love to cut and run. This is exactly the time in the festivities when he files for bankruptcy. But this time he can’t. He has to go all the way through this and pay the bill — and for him, there is no greater torture than being an adult and facing the music. On November 3 the world’s biggest loser will find himself in the same place as George McGovern and Walter Mondale. And he will freak.