Trump’s Unhealthy Legal Strategy

During his presidency, Donald Trump was a picture of perfect health, other than a quick Covid bout. If the overweight seventy year old had anything wrong with him, we didn’t know about it. To be fair, the President’s health could be considered a state secret, so fine.

Once he’s out of office, he will face a slew of indictments and lawsuits. Trump’s response to legal challenges has always been the same: deny, obstruct and delay (and when all of that fails, surrender quietly).

Health issues are a time-worn tactic to delaying legal proceedings. It will be interesting to see how many ailments Trump comes up with once he has to go to court.

Phlebitis, anyone?

Trump’s Proud Pardons

It isn’t going to take much to identify the Proud Boys and other people that invaded the US Capitol buildings yesterday. Few of them wore masks, there was plenty of camera footage and most of them probably put selfies on social media.

No, the question is not going to be who did it. The question is going to be whether Donald Trump pardons them on his way out the door. On the one hand, these folks are the ‘foot soldiers’ of his political movement. He pardoned the ‘generals’ – Roger Stone and Paul Manafort – so it would look bad if he abandoned his regular troops. Who would go into battle for him again?

On the other hand, Trump cannot pardon folks without knowing their names. So if law enforcement really wants to go after the invaders, they would be wise to keep their names secret until Jan 20 when Joe Biden takes over.

Unless, of course, Trump is impeached or relieved of his duties before then.

Ask Raffensperger Again

A few days ago, someone finally asked Brad Raffensperger what everyone wants to know: “Would you vote for Donald Trump again?”

As Georgia’s Secretary of State, Raffensperger has been assailed and bullied by Trump for not finding a bogus reason to tilt the election in his favor. Still, he avoided answering the question, stating simply that “I support Republicans — I always have and I probably always will.”

Raffensperger’s circumspection might have been to avoid any appearance of influencing the runoff elections for Georgia’s senators. But that voting is over. Someone ought to put it to Raffensperger again, especially considering the Trump-supported activities in Washington this afternoon.

The question should be a bit different, though.

“Do you really still think Donald Trump is the kind of person that should be President?”

Ted Cruzes Out Front

Have you noticed how Ted Cruz is now the de-facto face of the senators against democracy? A week ago it was only Senator Josh Hawley who was against the ceremonial certification of the presidential election results. Then a number of other senators signed on and all of the sudden the news is all Cruz.

The Donald Trump years must have been hard for Cruz. Other than Trump, there is no Republican politician more narcissistic and ready to recklessly blow stuff up than Cruz. And one could argue that Trump is not really a Republican, which leaves Cruz in first place. He was Trump’s strongest competitor in the 2016 primaries.

One explanation for Cruz muscling his way into the media spotlight is that he wants to get Trump’s base behind him when he runs for Senate again in 4 years. The more Cruz-like explanation is that he figures Trump is toast and wants to inherit his mantle when he runs for president in 2024.

Cruz probably figures that after Trump leaves office his legal troubles are going to pile on. The pile will be so deep that even Trump will be damaged goods, maybe even a convicted felon. Cruz is preparing to assume the role of bomb-thrower-in-chief.

Either way, he has nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Trump’s Secret Service Secret?

Is America’s Secret Service getting better at keeping secrets? During Barack Obama’s time the president’s security detail kept the scandals coming: strip clubs, prostitutes, drinking themselves into a stupor. The last incident happened a few months into Donald Trump’s presidency. Then they completely stopped.

One school of thought is that the Secret Service cleaned up its act. Changed its culture. Got rid of the overly macho agents who made bad choices.

Anyone that has experience with turning an institution’s culture around might be a bit skeptical of this. Especially if it is a quasi military institution like the Secret Service. They might just think that the agents simply got better at keeping their secrets.

If the second alternative is true, it might have been pretty handy for Trump. Here’s a guy who fancied himself as a ladies man his whole life. Being married didn’t stop him from wanting and having other women. Do we really think that he was able to turn his personal culture around on a dime when he moved into the White House? And stay faithful to his often absent wife for 4 long years?

Maybe he and the Secret Service came to an arrangement. Maybe he cut a deal with them. “Take care of me like you took care of John Kennedy – not the Dallas part but the secret staircase Marilyn Monroe part. In exchange, I’ll look the other way when you guys have your fun. As long as you get smart about it.”

We will probably never know. For now.

[UPDATE DEC 31, 2020] Joe Biden is reportedly replacing some of Trump’s Secret Service agents. Maybe he knows something we don’t.

Don’t Bank on Trump

Yesterday the bankers who lent money to Trump Inc. resigned, or more likely, were allowed to resign. The bank they worked for has not enjoyed the spotlight that comes with financing Trump. It will probably jettison him as a client as soon as possible (he still owes the bank over $300 million).

There probably aren’t any other mainstream banks that want anything to do with Trump’s businesses. So he will have to look for other sources of financing. Most likely private investors and/or banks from countries in the Middle East, Russia and China. Lenders that will be pleased to have Trump owe them big money.

Especially if he or his kids stay in politics. And don’t look to closely at how the money was laundered sourced.

Did Trump Just Fold?

Just asking because his fundraising has slowed down. He used to send 15+ emails a day asking for money. But in the past few days it has fallen to just one or two.

The old saying is, “follow the money,” and in Donald Trump’s case that is especially true. Trump may have folded in terms of the 2020 presidential election and his “stop the steal” campaign but there is no way that he is done tapping into his supporters’ money tree.

The question is whether his next campaign focuses on helping other Republicans or just moves right into the 2024 election, keeping the spotlight on himself.

My guess is it’s primarily the latter. Unless one of his kids decides to run for office . . .

The Hangover, Part D

The country is about to have a massive hangover. It’s been on a 5 year stimulation binge, fueled by non-stop tweets and righteous outrage from the left and right. The tweeter-in-chief will keep it up once out of office, but the media coverage and shit-stirring will (hopefully) drop down a notch.

Binge drink for a night and you wake up with a hangover. Binge on tweet-crack for 5 years and you end up with the shakes, or worse.

Fortunately, there is already a name for the condition that is associated with withdrawal from 24×7 Donald Trump.

I suppose you could just call it the DTs.

Voting Twice For Trump

Many of Donald Trump’s supporters voted for him twice. Without cheating. First they supported him with their ballots. Then they supported him with their checkbooks.

Trump has sent out over 400 fundraising emails since the election. “Help me defend this election and democracy.” They’re working – he’s hauling in the cash.

As usual, the mainstream media is missing the story. The media seems obsessed with reporting on how dimwitted Trump supporters are. The media writes stories about how they are being duped – the fine print gives Trump the right to use most of the money any way he wants, not just to challenge the election results.

The truth is that they are not being duped. They don’t really care how Trump uses the money, they just don’t want him to go away. They send money to show their support for him. Another vote for Trump.

The story the media should be covering is how many people still fervently support Trump even though he lost. But the media never understood Trump supporters and prefers to think of them as the ignorant white working class.

Isn’t it time for the media get it head out of its elitist arse and do its job?