With the 2020 presidential election now less than six months away, President Donald Trump sees the rising body count from coronavirus, an unemployment rate near 15 percent, and his own political fortunes fading, leaving him, according to aides, “shell-shocked” and “glum” by developments, with his campaign’s own internal polls showing him losing to presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden.
The Washington Post reports:
“In private conversations, (Trump) has struggled to process how his fortunes suddenly changed from believing he was on a glide path to reelection to realizing that he is losing to the likely Democratic nominee, former vice president Joe Biden, in virtually every poll, including his own campaign’s internal surveys, advisers said. He also has been fretting about the possibility that a bad outbreak of the virus this fall could damage his standing in the November election, said the advisers, who along with other aides and allies requested anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.”
However, rather than focus on what he can do to improve his standing with the public by more effectively fighting the virus, Trump is eager to start holding campaign rallies again, despite the possible danger to his supporters if he does so:
“The president is also eager to resume political travel in June, including holding his signature rallies by the end of the summer in areas where there are few cases, advisers said. Trump’s political team has begun discussions about organizing a high-dollar, in-person fundraiser next month, as well as preliminary planning about staging rallies and what sort of screenings might be necessary, according to Republican National Committee officials and outsider advisers.”
The predicament faced by Trump as he seeks a second term in office is of his own making. If he had acted sooner and not tried to dismiss COVID-19 as a Democratic “hoax,” there’s a very real chance voters would have been more receptive to his messages of hope and recovery. However, as it stands now, this president has the record of 80,000 dead Americans and the worst economy since the Great Depression hanging around neck like the proverbial albatross from Coleridge’s classic poem.
What seems most amazing is that Trump is shocked by what the polls reveal. It makes you wonder if he has completely lost touch with reality or is merely engaging in a form of self-constructed delusion.
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