Daily Summaries

Trump Daily 11/27/2020

This week the head of the GSA finally agreed that Biden is the apparent winner and initiated the actual transition process. Several media outlets, including reporters at major national publications, mistakenly characterized this as Trump accepting he’d lost the election. This is not what happened nor is it why Emily Murphy finally began the transition process. Trump is still, multiple times a day, claiming he won the election by a huge amount. The reason Murphy recognized Biden’s win is Congress. She was asked to appear before the House on Monday to address why she had not begun the transition process. She replied that they could instead speak to her deputy a week later. House leaders immediately responded to her with a thinly veiled threat of subpoena. After receiving the letter, Murphy published her own which opened the transition infrastructure to Biden.

Trump continues to assault the integrity of the election and continues to be rebuffed by the courts. They have now lost 39 lawsuits attempting to overturn the election and are now pleading with state legislatures directly to ignore the vote and appoint Trump electors. This is explicitly illegal. On Wednesday Trump called into a “hearing” in Pennsylvania about the same debunked fraud claims Giuliani has been pressing for weeks. This was not a hearing in any legal sense of the word. A handful of rogue PA state legislators had a press event in a hotel without any legal force behind it. This was not sanctioned by any government. No Democrats were included. This was merely a publicity stunt, not a government hearing.

Kash Patel has been placed in charge of the transition for the entire Department of Defense. Patel is a former Devin Nunes aid and was instrumental in pushing the conspiracy theories about Hunter Biden and Ukraine. Patel has been working at the Pentagon for 17 days. With less than three weeks of experience, he is the point person for moving the Pentagon to Biden’s control. This is a blatant attempt to make the transition as difficult as possible.

The president this week called the press corps into the briefing room where he spoke for just over a minute to notify them the Dow had broken 30,000., which he said was a “sacred number.” He made no other comments and took no questions. There’s been a rising movement in economics for some time now to stress that the Dow is not a particularly useful metric for measuring the health of the economy. 50% of the country own no stock whatsoever and 90% of the market is owned by the wealthiest ~10% of the country. This year has been an excellent illustration of the Dow’s divorce from the average American. As wealthy Americans have actually gained a great deal of wealth through 2020, food insecurity is at its highest level since the metric was first measured and food banks are seeing record demand and massive lines. At the end of December, several safeguards protecting the poor during the pandemic are going to expire. The federal eviction moratorium and student loan freeze will disappear. Most people receiving state unemployment payments will cease to receive them beginning December 26th. This could have a disastrous effect if the Senate does not take action.

Asked about whether he would leave the White House in January, amid his comments that he actually won the election, Trump exploded at CNN reporter Jeff Mason saying “don’t ever talk to the president that way” in response to a normal question. Like most other countries, Americans are allowed to speak to the president in whatever way they’d like.

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Daily Summaries

Trump Daily 2/21/2020

  • The president has sent multiple tweets attacking the Roger Stone jury, prosecutors, and judge. This is unheard of and isn’t the sort of thing that happened before his presidency. Stone is the sixth person to be convicted of/plead guilty to a felony.
  • In back to back rallies, the president made a number of bizarre statements. He criticized Parasite for winning Best Picture since it is a foreign film and lamented that we no longer have films like Gone with the Wind, which celebrated The Confederacy. In response to a Fox News piece about his poor debate performance, he read multiple polls from 2016 saying he’d won every debate. He again bragged about “keeping the oil” in Syria. In order to convince him to leave troops there, The Pentagon told him they could protect Syrian oil fields. The United States does not own them nor receive oil from them. On the campaign trail, Trump frequently said the US needed to take oil from the countries it invaded. Doing so is a war crime. He said that Republicans would “protect pre-existing” and give you “brand new pre-existing.” He often uses this wording instead of bringing up “protections for those with pre-existing conditions.” It is not clear he understands the concept. Republicans do not currently have any health care proposals at all and are in court fighting to end protections for those with pre-existing conditions. This is one of his most frequent lies. Also at the rally, he rapidly switched between two conspiracy theories: that his campaign was spied on (not true) and that networks often turn off their cameras during his rallies and refuse to show the crowds (also not true.) Some pundits have used this clip to further questions his mental health, including myself.

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