Honestly, these press briefings with Trump get more and more batsh*t every single day. Why give them air? Why give HIM air? What do we learn? Close to nothing. Today, though, his reaction the press bringing up something he did having nothing to do with COVID-19 was very instructive.
Trump fired the Intelligence Community's Inspector General, Michael Atkinson yesterday. Atkinson is the one who received the whistleblower's report that Trump's administration was withholding aid from Ukraine illegally in exchange for dirt on Joe Biden and his son. As was his job, Atkinson reviewed the report, and finding it compelling and urgent, passed it on to Congress. Now, while he thinks the entire country is looking the other way because of COVID-19, Trump took the opportunity to fire Atkinson.
A reporter at today's briefing decided to bring it up, asking why he was fired, since he was simply doing his job by taking the complaint to Congress.
As you can imagine, Trump did not take kindly to this. Snarling like the rabid, mangy, raccoon that he is, he brought out all the usual taunts and lies.
- He did a terrible job.
- Brought a fake report to Congress.
- Not a big Trump fan, that I can tell you.
- It was a perfect transcript. (multiple times, with this one...)
- He never even came to see me. How can you do that?
- Where's the whistleblower?
- Where's the informer?
Then came the Schiff-bashing.
I revealed the conversation. I got approval from Ukraine because I didn't want to reveal it without their approval, and they said, "Absolutely, you did nothing wrong."
And over that, with a 196 to nothing vote by the Republicans, not one dissenting Republican vote, dishonest Democrats impeached the president of the United States. That man is a disgrace to IGs. Let's go. Next. He's a total disgrace.
Wait, wut? Now, Adam Schiff is the informer?
None of these other lies are particularly interesting or new, but he's accusing Adam Schiff of being the informer/whistleblower's source? It is absurd.
And the fact that Trump thinks he can use a pandemic to satisfy his authoritarian thirst for revenge, and won't get questioned about it at a presser is definitely worth noting. This becomes jarringly clear when the next reporter tries to follow up.
TRUMP: Okay, we'll get off this because people wanna talk about what we're talking about. But let me just tell you something. That's MY decision. I have the absolute right. Even the fake news last night said, "He has the absolute right to do it." But ask him. "Why didn't you go and see the actual conversation?" There was no rush. He said, "Oh, we have to rush it." He even said it was politically biased. He actually said that.
The report could have been — You know who the whistleblower is, and so do you, and so do you, and so does everybody in this room, and so do I. But they give this whistleblower a status that he doesn't deserve. He's a fake whistleblower. And frankly, someone ought to sue his ass off."
You could see the frenzy in his eyes grow as he became more and more agitated that second reporter would dare bring up a topic unflattering to the Great Ruler. When he begins to point to individual reporters in the room, accusing them of knowing the identity of the whistleblower, and then landing on himself, saying that he does, too? The venom in his voice when he crescendos by inciting a threat against the whistleblower of being sued? If that doesn't make your blood run cold, if you don't see a tyrannical man-child with nothing but self-interest and revenge on his tiny shredded mind, you're a different species, my friend.