His true followers….
Not even the people who wrote the damn thing or work with him…
But then Trump has always been a snake oil real estate salesman and always gets some bites, eh?
The trolling was as epic as the setting was legally questionable: sitting and listening to Trump were more than a thousand supporters, packed together tightly in white chairs on the White House lawn, and almost none of them were wearing masks. While thus publicly and flagrantly flouting public-health standards, Trump touted his response to the pandemic as one that is focussed exclusively “on the science, the facts, and the data.”
Did they expect anyone to believe it? Who knows, but politically, at least, the spectacle suggested a President entering his reëlection campaign not strong and confident of victory but insecure and faltering, a President whose prospects, left unvarnished by lies and fantasy, were so poor that his strategists had to reinvent him as a different person altogether. The departure from reality was so complete that I spent much of the week feeling sorry for the many journalists now employed as real-time fact checkers.
The truth is that Trump’s heart wasn’t really in the ridiculously uncredible makeover anyway. Fear is his preferred political drug, and nasty personal attacks are his default setting. This is what he is pushing, now and forever. Minutes into his speech, he framed the election as a fight to “save the American Dream” and “the American way of life” from Democrats who would give “free reign to violent anarchists, agitators, and criminals who threaten our citizens.” Trump attacked Biden by name forty-one times in his prepared remarks, some kind of record in a Convention speech. Biden is a “destroyer of American greatness” itself, Trump said, and he supports “the most extreme set of proposals ever put forward by a major-party nominee.” He is a pawn of China and the radical left, “a Trojan horse for socialism,” a representative of a “failed political class,” and a loser on the wrong side of history. He and his party will “demolish the suburbs.” They will “confiscate your guns.” Biden, in short, will end America as you know it.
The problem, of course, is that America as we know it is currently in the midst of a mess not of Biden’s making but of Trump’s. Suffice it to say that, by the time Trump’s speech was over and the red, white, and blue fireworks spelling out “2020” had been set off over the National Mall, late Thursday night, more than three thousand seven hundred Americans had died of the coronavirus since the start of the Convention—more than perished on 9/11—and a hundred and eighty thousand Americans total had succumbed to the disease, a disease that Trump repeatedly denied was even a threat. His botched handling of the pandemic was the very reason that his Convention was taking place on the White House lawn in the first place.
But the real message of the evening was that nothing, not even a deadly plague or a cratering economy, can stop Trump from being Trump. He bragged. He lied. He even ad-libbed a taunt at his critics, using the White House as his prop. “We’re here,” he said, pointing to the flood-lit mansion behind him, “and they’re not.”….