Donald Trump knows what he's doing.
Former New Hampshire Republican senator Gordon Humphrey, who believes President Trump should be removed from office pursuant to the 25th Amendment, has written to U.S. Representative Annie Shuster, arguing "Donald Trump is impaired by a seriously sick psyche. His sick mind and reckless conduct could consume the lives of millions. The threat of nuclear war is steeply on the rise.” He added "Donald Trump is impaired by a seriously sick psyche. His sick mind and reckless conduct could consume the lives of millions. The threat of nuclear war is steeply on the rise.”
But Donald Trump is not sick, merely consumed by the two loves of his life, his business interests and himself, probably in that order.
When the President responded to the planned mayhem in Charlottesville by remarking "We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence that's on many sides. On many sides." he was slapped around not only by Democrats such as Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi, but by several Republicans. Senator John McCain wrote "white supremacists and neo-Nazis are, by definition, opposed to American patriotism and the ideals that define us as apeople and make our nation special."
Senator Orrin Hatch tweeted "We should call evil by its name. My brother didn't give his life fighting Hitler for Nazi ideas to go unchallenged here at home." Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee commented "'white supremacy' crap is worst kind of racism- it's EVIL and perversion of God's truth to ever think our Creator values some above others." Senators Rubio of Florida and Gardner of Colorado also were sharply critical of the President.
Also recognizing, but praising Trump for, his bothsiderism, neo-Nazi founder Andrew Anglin of The Daily Stormer wrote
Trump's comments were good. He didn't attack us. He just said the nation should come together. Nothing specific against us.
He said that we need to study why people are so angry and implied that there was hate... on both sides!
So he implied the antifa are haters. There was no counter-signaling of us at all. Also refused to answer a question about White Nationalists supporting him.
No condemnation at all. When asked to condemn, he just walked out of the room. Really, really good.
Anglin signed off with "God bless him," a nice touch which Trump probably didn't understand.
Despite plaudits from Nazis, a presidential spokesperson issued Sunday a statement which claimed the President's condemnation "includes white supremacists, KKK, neo-Nazis and all extremist groups."
Obviously, he's not sincere but that hasn't hurt him in the past. It does, however, give his GOP critics significant cover, the opportunity to claim that Trump learned from the episode, and isn't such a bad guy. He has grown!
Moreover, Trump has yet again reassured his popular base that he is with them and clarified (while not reversing)- his comments only because the big, bad liberal press made him do it. When Trump had to walk back a comment about Mexican immigrants being "rapists" and criminals, The Daily Stormer commented "Our Glorious Leader and ULTIMATE SAVIOR has gone full-wink-wink-wink to his most aggressive supporters."
Republicans in Congress now can pivot to "tax reform," the effort to cut taxes for millionaires and corporations. He may be a monster, but he's our monster, they know, and his legislative priorities are theirs.
Call him Trump, Mr. Trump, Donald, President, or the President. Better yet, call him Mr. Fox- as in crazy like one.