Donald Trump Is An Asshole

This post began life with another title, Quote Of The Day: Over Thinking The Election. It was a good title but not catchy enough. The “quote” turned into “quotes” and I realized that the title had to change to something snappier. Besides, I haven’t written a Donald Trump Is post in 2020.

Enough navel gazing. As Bugs and Daffy would have surely said at this point: On with the show, this is it.

I wrote the other day about how the elite inside-the-beltway media has been in the bag for the GOP since the Reagan years. That’s particularly true of Politico. Every time a politically unsophisticated friend shares a Politico piece on social media I cringe. Half the time their articles are poisoned darts aimed at Democrats. Politico specializes in “Democrats in disarray” articles. It’s long been a fanzine for the Republican Party. That’s why Charlie Pierce calls them Tiger Beat On The Potomac.

One of the openly pro-GOP Politico types is Tim Alberta. In 2019, he published what is supposed to be a good book about the Party of Trump. Like many other GOPers and fellow travelers, Alberta does not care for Donald Trump. I’m not sure why Cheney and Rove were okay when they were just as assholish as the Impeached Insult Comedian, but progress is progress.

Alberta is one of those Politico writers who specializes in “who voters would like to have a beer with” style campaign coverage. This is what nailed Al Gore to the wall in 2000. He wasn’t as warm and fuzzy as Poppy Bush’s amiable offspring. That amiable dolt got us into a deeply stupid war. Oy, just oy.

The genre is especially weird in an election featuring two teetotalers. Maybe someday, I’ll write about that phenomenon. It almost makes me nostalgic for the days of “Bourbon and branch water” pols like Harry Truman and Sam Rayburn. The latter often used the euphemism “let’s strike a blow for liberty” when it was time for cocktail hour in his Capitol Hill hideaway office. Bottoms up, Mr. Sam.

Alberta has gone back to the well in 2020 and produced a winner. I never expected to praise and quote a Tim Alberta “who voters would like to have a beer with” piece but 2020 is a weird-n-wacky year.  It’s a longer quote that I typically use but, hey, 2020.

Tim Alberta concludes that we’re over thinking the election:

But if Trump loses, the biggest factor won’t be Covid-19 or the economic meltdown or the social unrest. It will be his unlikability.

As I wrote last week in a dispatch from Arizona, sometimes you hear a voter say something “so basic, so one-dimensional, that you’re inclined to dismiss it until you hear it for the thousandth time.” That’s the story of this election: All across America, in conversations with voters about their choices this November, I’ve been hearing the same thing over and over again: “I don’t like Trump.” (Sometimes there’s a slight variation: “I’m so tired of this guy,” “I can’t handle another four years of this,” etc. The remarkable thing? Many of these conversations never even turn to Biden; in Phoenix, several people who had just voted for the Democratic nominee did not so much as mention his name in explaining their preference for president.

But if Trump loses, the biggest factor won’t be Covid-19 or the economic meltdown or the social unrest. It will be his unlikability.

Generations of pollsters and journalists have fixated on the question of which candidate voters would rather have a beer with—a window into how personality translates into political success. Here’s the thing: Americans have been having a beer with Trump for the past four years—every morning, every afternoon, every evening. He has made himself more accessible than any president in history, using the White House as a performance stage and Twitter as a real-time diary for all to read. Like the drunk at the bar, he won’t shut up.

Whatever appeal his unfiltered thoughts once held has now worn off. Americans are tired of having beers with Trump. His own supporters are tired of having beers with Trump. In hundreds of interviews this year with MAGA loyalists, I have noted only a handful in which the person did not, unsolicited, point to the president’s behavior as exhausting and inappropriate. Strip away all the policy fights, all the administrative action (or inaction), all the culture war politics, and the decision for many people comes down to a basic conclusion: They just do not approve of the president as a human being.

Shorter Tim Alberta: Donald Trump is an asshole who won’t STFU.

President* Pennywise let his asshole flag fly again in Erie, Pennsylvania at his most recent MAGAPALOOZA:

“Four or five months ago when we started this whole thing….before the plague came in, I had it made,” Trump said during a rally in Erie, Pennsylvania. “I wasn’t coming to Erie. I mean I have to be honest, there’s no way I was coming. I didn’t have to.”

Unfortunately, the President complained to his supporters, the pesky COVID-19 pandemic that’s caused his approval ratings to plummet forced him to actually reach out to them.

“And then we got hit with the plague, and I had to go back to work,” Trump said. “Hello, Erie. Can I please have your vote?”

That’s why I call him the Impeached Insult Comedian.

Repeat after me: Donald Trump is an asshole.

The last word goes to Leadbelly:

6 thoughts on “Donald Trump Is An Asshole

  1. LarrytheRed says:

    “And then we got hit with the plague, and I had to go back to work,” Trump said. Trump admits he hasn’t worked since the 2016 campaign. News flash: Trump admits the obvious!

  2. Archy says:

    Agreed. And thus the title!

  3. Adam David Miller says:

    Rocky and Bullwinkle? Surely you mean Bugs and Daffy.

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