Two radically different presidential town hall events occurred last night.
Joe Biden spoke with George Stephanopoulos on ABC in front of a sparse audience and answered questions, calmly and effectively giving in-depth policy answers while mostly staying on topic. His breadth of experience and knowledge were obvious and after the show he stayed in the hall and continued to answer the questions of those attendees who didn’t make it on air.
At the same time, Donald Trump spoke with Savannah Guthrie on NBC and was pummeled with questions that he had a difficult time answering, often getting testy and defensive. Trump told so many lies that Rachel Maddow spent a substantial portion of her show’s first segment going over his lies, some of them truly dangerous, and correcting them. For example, Trump claimed he had the greatest economy in the history of our country, which was patently false. On job growth and GDP, the last three years of Obama were better. His lie wasn’t even close. He also said that 85% of people who wear masks catch Covid, which was dangerously and completely false. Trump was referring to a CDC report about Covid patients and completely misread or misunderstood what the report was about. His reading comprehension seems to be abysmal. Trump also gave the USA good marks for Covid morbidity, which was wrong. Our death rates have been among the worst of the advanced countries. When pressed, Trump failed to distance himself from the ridiculous Q-anon conspiracy, and got angry with Guthrie, sarcastically calling her “cute” in yet another moment of misogynistic disdain. Guthrie asked a sweaty Trump why he re-tweeted a crazy conspiracy post about Obama killing bin Laden’s body double and then killing Seal Team 6 (the member of Seal Team 6 who actually shot bin Laden refuted this insane lie publicly), and Trump replied that he merely wanted others to look and judge for themselves. Guthrie then suggested that nobody wants their crazy uncle in the White House!
The evening was another big winner for Biden and a big loser for Trump. Many on social media were describing it as Town Hall versus Clown Hall.
It was revealed yesterday that our Intel Community was been warning the Trump regime about contacts that Rudy Giuliani has been making with Russian agents, contacts that may have led Giuliani to present to the New York Post a document about Hunter Biden that they made much political noise about even though experts said it was a forgery. Adding to the embarrassing mess, Giuliani’s daughter published a piece in Vanity Fair yesterday bitterly critical of the Trump administration and imploring citizens to get out and vote for Biden to save our democracy, which she described as hanging by a finger from a cliff.
It was also reported yesterday that fire-ravaged California won’t be getting federal disaster relief funds, a move that has outraged many California residents who believe that the denial of funds was purely political payback for being a blue state. And of course, that’s exactly what Trump said he would do, and exactly what he told his administration to do–stop giving blue states federal dollars. He’s not the president of the United States, he’s the head cheerleader of the Red States.
But in Red States and others, coronavirus continues to surge. Cases rose yesterday in 40 of the 50 states, with 17 seeing record new daily case numbers, and the US total of confirmed infections topped 8-million. On a graph, it looks like the start of a third wave of infections. Hospitals in North Dakota and Oklahoma have been running short of ICU space, and first responders are again running short on PPE. The Trump Covid catastrophe keep spreading and growing while at the same time he keeps pretending that we’ve somehow turned a corner. Perhaps this latest tsunami of cases will push voters away from his dangerous incompetence and dishonesty.
Sadly, Senate Republicans last night said that they were not interested in discussing, much less passing, a coronavirus relief package resembling the one the House and the Trump team have been negotiating. Their rejection of a relief package was harsh news to the millions of Americans who’ve been living on the edge of financial ruin or worse, but somehow Mitch McConnell isn’t concerned about them, he’s concerned about his paymaster Charles Koch who desperately wants another conservative on the Supreme Court to make it easier for him and Koch Industries to pillage and pollute the planet with impunity. McConnell’s moral depravity and indifference to suffering are truly disgusting.
Barack Obama is about to hit the campaign trail for Joe Biden, and said yesterday that he feels the election will be a lot closer than the rosy polls predict–and we should heed his warning. Trump has taken a wrecking ball to so many cherished institutions, norms and traditions that another four years are unimaginable. We can’t let up. Every single vote matters.
Keep resisting Trump and keep working to “vote his ass out of office.”
Enjoy the weekend.