Originally posted on July 6, 2020
Most politicians at least try to give us an idea of what policies, at least in a general sense, they will favor if elected. A common question asked of anybody running for office is: “Why do you want to be (re)elected?” Recently Trump has been asked that twice by friendly interviewers, like Sean Hannity (Fox) and Eric Bolling (Sinclair). His answer to Hannity was first:
“One of the things that will be really great — the word experience is still good, I always say talent is more important than experience, I’ve always said that — but the word experience is a very important word, a very important meaning.
“I never did this before, never slept over in Washington. I was in Washington maybe 17 times and all of a sudden I’m the president of the United States, you know the story, riding down Pennsylvania Avenue with our first lady and I say this is great but I didn’t know very many people in Washington, it wasn’t my thing. I was from Manhattan, from New York, and now I know everybody. And I have great people in the administration. You make some mistakes, like an idiot like Bolton, you don’t have to drop bombs on everybody.”
Even reading those 140 words as generously possible there’s no answer contained in them – other than Trump congratulating himself, or something. A few days later Bolling gave him another chance. This time Trump gave a longer answer:
“Well, I didn’t hear anybody was upset with it, but I will tell you it’s very simple: We’re going to make America great again. We’ve rebuilt the military, we have a ways to go. We’ve done things for the vets like nobody’s ever seen. We can do even more — we did choice, as you know, we did accountability. What we’ve done nobody’s been able to do. But we have more to do.
“Economic development, jobs, trade deals — the trade deals I’ve made are incredible. We made the great deal with China. Of course, as I said, the ink wasn’t dried before we got hit with the China plague. But we made the deal. In fact, today is really the first day, the first official day, the USMCA — that’s Mexico and Canada. This was NAFTA, one of the worst deals ever made, one of the worst trade deals. We suffered with that deal for many, many years, and nobody could terminate it. I terminated it — gave you a new deal. I made a new deal with South Korea. We have many great trade deals. Our country will be so strong.
“At the end of our first term, it’s going to be great, it would have been phenomenal. We got hit with the plague. At the end of the second term, it’s going to be at a level that nobody will have ever seen a country. We’re doing it, whether it’s trade, whether it’s military — all made in the USA, so important. Made in the USA. … We’ve got to bring back our manufacturing and I brought it back very big, but we have to make our own pharmaceutical products, our own drugs, prescription drugs.
“We have to make our own things — we’re doing it now with steel, we’re doing it now with a lot of different products. I’ve done that. But we can do it with a lot more. We want to build our own ships. We don’t want to send out to other countries to build ships. So we have a lot of things we can do. We’ve done a lot but we have a lot of things we can do.”
In those 367 words, again being as generous as possible, is there any even pretense to an answer to the question? So why does Trump want so badly to be re-elected? Two answers come to mind. (1) He just wants to WIN, regardless of what he’s winning at. (2) He’s afraid of losing the presidential immunity he now enjoys. Certainly there’s not even a hint about actual governance.