On Saturday, while in Japan for a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, President Donald Trump thought it would be a great idea to take a cheap shot at the man he most fears among the 2020 Democratic contenders for the White House, Joe Biden. Trump fired off this tweet:
North Korea fired off some small weapons, which disturbed some of my people, and others, but not me. I have confidence that Chairman Kim will keep his promise to me, & also smiled when he called Swampman Joe Biden a low IQ individual, & worse. Perhaps that’s sending me a signal?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2019
So the President of the United States sided with a man who has said he intends to destroy the United States with nuclear weapons over a former vice president. That’s par for the course for the infantile Trump, but it highlights a larger problem for the incumbent president: He’s obsessed with Biden. And that, his top advisers believe, only serves to further elevate and strengthen his possible Democratic opponent in next year’s election, according to the Washington Post:
Some White House aides also said it was better for Trump to be fighting with Pelosi than former vice president Joe Biden or other 2020 candidates, as the president has done recently, elevating their status.
Trump’s repeated cheap shots at Biden also highlight a much larger problem for him: He doesn’t know how to handle Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who clearly knows how to push his buttons in a major way:
Trump, who has long admired Pelosi and showered her with compliments for her grip on her caucus, also recently told West Wing aides how tough she is — and how she keeps her party in line with an iron fist. “She has some real crazies,” he said recently to an adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
While Pelosi has employed a strategy of trying to make Trump appear childish, she actually has told colleagues she thinks he’s unworthy of such a comparison. When a Democrat compared Trump to a fifth-grader, Pelosi responded that such a remark was an insult to fifth-graders, according to an individual who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the conversation.
The Post article echoes another one from the New York Times two weeks ago regarding Trump’s obsession with Biden. Rather than focusing in the trade negotiations with China, Trump had to bring up the former VP on Twitter:
“China is DREAMING that Sleepy Joe Biden, or any of the others, gets elected in 2020. They LOVE ripping off America!”
That allowed Biden to tell reporters:
“He’s going about it all the wrong way, a lot of bravado, no action.”
As a result, Biden got the last word on the issue and also managed to highlight just how clueless the incumbent president is on both trade and politics.
Biden is taking up space in Trump’s head rent free. Then again, so is Pelosi. And both of them present a very real, existential threat to a president who is falling in the polls and increasingly unsteady in public. In other words, Trump is destroying himself and saving his opponents the trouble.
Featured Image Via NBC News