I know, I know, and water is wet, right? But I was struck by something he said in his news conference today that was widely reported as reaching new levels of incoherence and rambling. Read the transcript and see for yourself. Here’s a bit of it.
He was asked about the many reports of anti-Semitic incidents following his election.
“What do you say to those among the Jewish community in the states and in Israel and maybe around the world who believe and feel that your administration is playing with xenophobia and maybe racist tones?”
He did not say what should have come instinctively, that these were wrong and that he condemned them wholeheartedly and would tell the law enforcement authorities to investigate and prosecute those who did them. Instead, he made it about himself as he always does, first talking about his electoral college win before saying, “Number one, I am the least anti- Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Number two, racism, the least racist person.” That this is obviously false does not faze him in the least. He seems to be trying to convince himself that he is the best.
He also described his obviously faltering administration as a ‘fine-tuned machine’.
Then take his response to a question about Russia.
We had Hillary Clinton give Russia 20 percent of the uranium in our country. You know what uranium is, right? This thing called nuclear weapons like lots of things are done with uranium including some bad things. Nobody talks about that.
Who talks like this? We used to laugh at George W. Bush because of his juvenile way of speaking. With Trump we are going all the way back to grade school.
Trump desperately needs adulation as a sign of personal validation and as the criticisms of him rise he will increasingly retreat to organized rallies like the one scheduled for Saturday in Florida where crowds will cheer him and he can feel loved again. When presidents hold rallies, it is to usually to gin up public support for some proposal. But this rally seems to be designed just to make Trump feel loved. But how long will crowds keep turning up? True, he has a loyal base of fans and the party can beat the bushes and round up people for a time but the enthusiasm that accompanies an election is gone and people have their own lives to live. What will he do when the roar of the crowd gets muted?
What will he do when he organizes a rally and no one comes?