Last night, news began to surface that Trump had dismissed Inspector General Linick at Pompeo’s request and that Linick was not only investigating Pompeo’s improper using of State Department staff, but the actions of the Trump administration likely involved creating a fake emergency in order to justify the sale of $8B in arms to Saudi Arabia. Then Donald Trump did what he does best — he held a press conference where he confirmed most of that salacious information, while dropping a bomb that he had been taking hydroxychloroquine.
May 18th 2020
A few hours later, the White House physician sent out a memo that described what happened, only he never confirmed that Trump was actually taking the medication. Voila! Instead of people now focusing on Pompeo, Trump, Saudi Arabia and the reason for canning Linick, everyone is consumed with whether the president is taking a dangerous medication or lying about it. He has once again diverted the attention and lost no real political ground in doing it. Diversion is Trump’s forte.
The hard question we all need to face at this point, is that given the state of the pandemic and how limited in-person campaign rallies will be leading up to November, how will Democrats maneuver against Trump, a master at manipulating the news cycle? He not only has complete control over the media with his position as president, but he has the ability to outrage and stun and then deflect any accusations leveled at him. With both sides utilizing virtual campaigns, this circumstance and skill set seem to favor Trump. That is scary.
How will Democrats compete with the new parameters of the presidential race? One of Joe Biden’s greatest strengths is running a strong traditional campaign. What are Democrats’ strengths in this lock-down arena if Trump can so easily re-direct the media and the public and he continues to control the news cycle? (I’m even inadvertently guilty of falling for it — compare the two tweets above: I used the phrase “BREAKING” for the one with him saying he was on the controversial medication, yet inadvertently left “BREAKING” off of the tweet with the really critical admission.)
Considering Trump’s strengths, the pandemic and the sudden change in how campaigns will need to be run this year, what are Democrats biggest weaknesses leading into November?
Also, in keeping with this theme and to give you a much needed laugh, watch this:
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