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Less than four months before the presidential election, Team Trump seems dazed and confused. Held despite warnings from public health officials, the big rally in Tulsa was poorly attended. Concerns over turnout factored into canceling a rally in New Hampshire. Revelations that White House staff, Secret Service personnel, and members of the president’s entourage who attended recent events tested positive for COVID-19 embarrassed the administration. Most important, Team Trump’s response to this summer’s surge in Coronavirus cases and the protests following the killing of George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks by police officers has been inconsistent and incoherent.
On July 5, Trump bit Fox News, the hand that has fed him, for reporting on polls showing that Joe BidenJoe BidenDonald Trump Jr. to self-publish book 'Liberal Privilege' before GOP convention Tom Price: Here's how we can obtain more affordable care The Memo: Democrats feel rising tide in Florida MORE has a substantial lead in battleground states. “We are leading in the real polls,” the president tweeted, without evidence. Declaring that Fox was “getting into CNN and MSDNC territory,” Trump recommended that his supporters switch to OANN, a far-right platform that has promoted false claims that Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden wins Louisiana primary Mueller pens WaPo op-ed: Roger Stone 'remains a convicted felon, and rightly so' The Memo: Democrats feel rising tide in Florida MORE is secretly bankrolling antifa, California legislators want to ban sales of the Bible and that the Coronavirus was created by the Deep State in North Carolina (citing a “citizen investigator” who believes Dr. Anthony FauciAnthony FauciDeSantis breaks with Fauci, says Florida didn't rush reopening Overnight Health Care: Coronavirus deaths rise again amid mounting outbreaks | The Trump-Fauci divide is getting more apparent | New York to deliver remdesivir to Florida after DeSantis dismisses offer for help BioNTech CEO confident vaccine will be ready for regulatory approval by end of 2020 MORE personally funded the creation of the virus).
Team Trump fought a belated — and futile — fight to suppress publication of John BoltonJohn BoltonTrump envoy says US ready to talk to North Korea but rebukes Pyongyang counterpart Why Trump can't make up his mind on China The benefits of American disinterest in world affairs MORE’s book “The Room Where It Happened,” alerting potential readers to the former National Security Advisor’s claims that the president always put his own personal interests ahead of national security. And, apparently, Team Trump did’t learn. An ill-considered effort to block the release of a memoir by Mary Trump, the president’s niece, has helped propel her book to the top of the bestseller list. In “Too Much and Never Enough,” Ms. Trump, a clinical psychologist, describes her uncle as “much as he was when he was three years old: incapable of growing, learning or evolving, unable to regulate his emotions, moderate his responses, or take in and synthesize information”; a man who values human beings “only in monetary terms,” subscribes to “cheating as a way of life,” and now “threatens the world’s health, economic security, and social fabric.”
The administration’s apparent plan to urge Americans to “learn to live” with the Coronavirus, complemented by the president’s false claim that 99 percent of cases are “completely harmless,” has not played well, especially with older voters, who provided the margin of victory for Trump in many states in 2016. According to recent polls, many Americans over 65 now find Trump coarse, disrespectful, and divisive. Feeling at risk from COVID-19, they believe his administration has not prioritized public health over reopening the economy.
President TrumpDonald John TrumpDeSantis on Florida schools reopening: 'If you can do Walmart,' then 'we absolutely can do schools' NYT editorial board calls for the reopening of schools with help from federal government's 'checkbook' Mueller pens WaPo op-ed: Roger Stone 'remains a convicted felon, and rightly so' MORE has vowed to veto the $740 billion National Defense Authorization Act — despite bi-partisan support in Congress and from Pentagon officials — if the legislation authorizes the DOD to remove the names of Confederate officers from military bases, ships, aircraft, streets and other federal property. And Trump has blasted NASCAR, the National Football League, the owners of the Washington Redskins and the Cleveland Indians for succumbing to political correctness. That said, perhaps in a tacit acknowledgment that a substantial majority of Americans disapprove of the president’s handling of race relations and protests, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany recently told reporters that he “was not making a judgment, one way or the other” on flying the Confederate flag.
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