Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Death of a Presidency

Last week Donald Trump finally got the message and told everyone to buckle in for a rough few weeks as the coronavirus pandemic is likely to get worse before it gets even worse.  Doctors Deborah Birx and Anthony Fauci told him that even if everyone stays at home except for going to out for necessities and stays six feet apart when they do go out, the death toll could be as high as 200,000. We already have over 200,000 active cases, more than another country.)
And so, Trump finally leveled with the American people and told them the truth.  Except for one thing - he absolved himself of all blame again.  He blamed New York and New Jersey for responding to the coronavirus too late (New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy had a task force meeting about the virus as early as February 2), he said that impeachment distracted him from the crisis at the time he was calling it a hoax (and Mitch McConnell concurred with him), and he refused to admit that there weren't enough tests for the virus (I'm so dumbfounded, I can't even think of something to say here in parentheses).
Because Trump dragged his heels for so long on this damn virus - not even listening to his economic adviser Peter Navarro when he told Trump as far back as January that this virus could be serious - he deserves no credit for being so brave and honest at the eleventh hour.  It's too late for that.  That 200,000-death figure could have been a whole lot lower if he'd taken action sooner.  As far as I'm concerned, his Presidency - even if he's re-elected - is already over.
Call it another victim of the virus.
Somewhere in the past thirty-five years, an event being the equivalent of Annie Oakley missing Kaiser Wilhelm when she shot a cigarette out of his mouth during Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show when it played Berlin - allowing World War I to happen - put America on the course to a Trump Presidency.  What was that "Annie Oakley moment"?  Maybe it was Hillary's 2016 presidential candidacy. Maybe it was the Troubled Asset Relief Program that was passed to assuage the 2008 financial crisis, which led to the Tea Party. Maybe it was 9/11, which led to Bush the Younger getting elected to a second term. which led to the financial crisis, or the Lewinsky affair, which helped Bush the Younger get into office due to Clinton fatigue. Or when Al Gore's son got run over and almost killed by a hit-and-run driver in Baltimore in 1991, meaning that Bill Clinton, not Gore, ran for and was elected President in 1992.  Maybe it was the Bimini affair that killed Gary Hart's 1988 presidential campaign and his political career or even the plagiarism scandal that felled Joe Biden's 1988 presidential campaign, both leading to Michael Dukakis' failed presidential campaign against Bush the Elder and beginning a string of accidental Presidents who shouldn't have been there in the first place, leading all the way to . . . Donald J. Trump.  (Well, except for Obama, who would have likely been one of Hart's or Biden's successors in the White House.  He's that good a politician.)    Finally, something has happened that can change the course of American political history and set us on another course that we should have been on all along.
And wouldn't it be funny if that Annie Oakley moment was Joe Biden's plagiarism scandal - but now Uncle Joe comes along to get us back on track?  One can only hope. 

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