Trump attributed his victory to social media when he said "I won the 2016 election with interviews, speeches, and social media." According to RiteTag, the estimated hourly statistics for #maga on Twitter alone include: 1304 unique tweets, 5,820,000 hashtag exposure, and 3424 retweets with 14% of #maga tweets including images, 55% including links, and 51% including mentions.
The first is that he can barely contain his affection for — and apparent desire to return to — political campaigning. This is a guy who is just days away from being sworn in as the 45th president, and he's already talking gleefully about the next campaign. (And if you don't think he's gleeful, read Tumulty's whole interview; it's really something.)
A Honduran migrant mother and child cower in fear as they are surrounded by Mexican Federal Police in riot gear, at the border crossing in Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico, Friday, Oct. 19, 2018. Central Americans traveling in a mass caravan broke through a Guatemalan border fence and streamed by the thousands toward Mexican territory, defying Mexican authorities' entreaties for an orderly migration and U.S. President Donald Trump's threats of retaliation. Moises Castillo, AP
Two of Trump's 15 original cabinet members were gone within 15 months: Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was forced to resign in September 2017 due to excessive use of private charter jets and military aircraft, and Trump replaced Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Mike Pompeo in March 2018 over disagreements on foreign policy. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt resigned in July 2018 amidst multiple investigations into his conduct.
Mr. Fleiss and other TV producers have watched — equal parts entranced and horrified — as Mr. Trump has taken the gimmicks of reality TV that he picked up on “The Apprentice” and applied them to daily governance. Flip comparisons of Mr. Trump’s White House and his years on “The Apprentice” abound, but behind the “You’re fired!” jokes is a serious case study in mass viewing habits and a president who has made up for his lack of experience in governing with an uncanny grasp of must-see TV.
In 1996, Trump acquired the Bank of Manhattan Trust Building, which was a vacant seventy-one story skyscraper on Wall Street. After an extensive renovation, the high-rise was renamed the Trump Building at 40 Wall Street. In 1997, he began construction on Riverside South, which he dubbed Trump Place, a multi-building development along the Hudson River. He and the other investors in the project ultimately sold their interest for $1.8 billion in 2005 in what was then the biggest residential sale in the history of New York City. From 1994 to 2002, Trump owned a 50 percent share of the Empire State Building. He intended to rename it "Trump Empire State Building Tower Apartments" if he had been able to boost his share. In 2001, Trump completed Trump World Tower. In 2002, Trump acquired the former Hotel Delmonico, which was renovated and reopened in 2004 as the Trump Park Avenue; the building consisted of 35 stories of luxury condominiums.
In December 2016, Time named Trump as its "Person of the Year". In an interview on The Today Show, he said he was honored by the award, but he took issue with the magazine for referring to him as the "President of the Divided States of America." In the same month, he was named Financial Times Person of the Year. In December 2016, Forbes ranked Trump the second most powerful person in the world, after Vladimir Putin and before Angela Merkel. In 2015, Robert Gordon University revoked the honorary Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) it had granted Trump in 2010, stating that "Mr. Trump has made a number of statements that are wholly incompatible with the ethos and values of the university."
Photographs by Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan (Don Junior), Taylor Hill (Lewandowski), Tasos Katopodis (Ivanka), Win Mcnamee (Trump), Spencer Platt (Jared), Astrid Stawiarz (Eric), Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call (Destefano), all from Getty Images; By John Shinkle/Politico (Stepien); From Mediapunch (Bossie), by Mary Schwalm/ A.P. Images (Bannon), both from Rex/Shutterstock.
Formal efforts to start the process of impeachment against Trump, who took office in January 2017, have been initiated by Representatives Al Green and Brad Sherman, both Democrats. Other people and groups have asserted that Trump has engaged in impeachable activity during his presidency. Talk of impeachment began before Trump took office.
Honduran migrants climb a border fence, in Tecun Uman, Guatemala, Friday, Oct. 19, 2018. Migrants broke down the gates at the border crossing and began streaming toward a bridge into Mexico. After arriving at the tall, yellow metal fence some clambered atop it and on U.S.-donated military jeeps. Young men began violently tugging on the barrier and finally succeeded in tearing it down. Oliver de Ros, AP
One problem for Democrats going into 2020 is that Trump makes it almost impossible not to respond to his daily outrages. “He’s sucked all the oxygen out of the room,” Bannon says. “They’re in a Kafka-esque nightmare right now. There’s no exit. I just love it.” Democrats have yet to develop a cohesive message and a consensus about whether the best way to defeat Trump is from the left or the middle. Doug Jones and Conor Lamb ran as moderates in deep red Alabama and Pennsylvania. But Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s upset win in New York over Speaker-in-waiting Joe Crowley gives progressives an argument that the Bernie Sanders wing of the party is ascendant. Dan Pfeiffer told me the problem for Democrats is how to balance the need to drive the base while trying to win back working-class voters Trump peeled off in places like Michigan and Wisconsin. “We’re going to have to figure out how to get the Obama coalition that did not turn out, plus win back midwestern states while improving performance in rural states,” he said.
Wrong. Republicans are passionate. Don't misjudge that as anger. We are passionate about our country, our way of life and the rule of law. We are passionate about freedom and liberty. We are passionate about a limited federal government. It's the Democrats who are angry that they are out of power. That's it. They are not in power so they are angry. They are harassing people who they disagree with, they are forming mobs....
Trump rejects the scientific consensus on climate change and his former Environmental Protection Agency chief, Scott Pruitt, does not believe that carbon emissions are the main cause of global warming. While admitting that the climate is warming, Pruitt believes that warming is not necessarily harmful and could be beneficial. Based on numerous studies, climate experts disagree with his position. On June 1, 2017, Trump announced the withdrawal of the United States from the Paris Agreement, making the U.S. the only nation in the world to not ratify the agreement.
Trump did not release his tax returns during his presidential campaign or afterward, contrary to usual practice by every candidate since Gerald Ford in 1976 and to his promise in 2014 to do so if he ran for office. Trump's refusal led to speculation that he was hiding something. He said that his tax returns were being audited, and his lawyers had advised him against releasing them. Trump has told the press that his tax rate was none of their business, and that he tries to pay "as little tax as possible".
“The Most Important Election of Our Lives.” That's my new column, and you hear it every time, but this year really is the most important contest in decades (or at least since 2016). Truth and accountability are on the ballot, and since that's the driving force for all of us at MoJo, I am going to make an ask: Will you pitch in $5 a month to support our kick-ass and uncompromising journalism today?
The dustup strained relations between Trump and Pence advisers. “Nick really fucked up,” a Republican close to the White House told me. “He got way out over his skis,” said a former West Wing official. Seeking to mend fences, Pence invited Corey Lewandowski to join his PAC, knowing that Trump sees Lewandowski as supremely loyal. “Corey was sent there to keep eyes on Pence,” the former official said. “Pence is politically adept. But at the end of the day, he’s still not good at faking sincerity,” former Trump aide Sam Nunberg said. “Trump’s not an idiot. He knows it.”
In July, the United States and China imposed tariffs on $34 billion of each other's goods, expanded to $50 billion in August. In September the U.S. introduced a 10% tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, poised to increase to 25% by the end of the year, and threatened further tariffs on an additional $267 billion if China retaliates. China countered the move with a 10% tariff on $60 billion of US imports, which combined with the previous round of tariffs, covers almost all $110 billion of U.S. imports to China.
Trump said he was "not sure" whether he ever asked God for forgiveness, stating "If I do something wrong, I just try and make it right. I don't bring God into that picture." He said he tries to take Holy Communion as often as possible because it makes him "feel cleansed". While campaigning, Trump referred to The Art of the Deal as his second favorite book after the Bible, saying, "Nothing beats the Bible." The New York Times reported that evangelical Christians nationwide thought "that his heart was in the right place, that his intentions for the country were pure."
On January 23, 2017, Trump ordered a temporary government-wide hiring freeze, except for those working in certain areas. The Comptroller General of the Government Accountability Office told a House committee that hiring freezes have not proven to be effective in reducing costs. Unlike some past freezes, the current freeze bars agencies from adding contractors to make up for employees leaving. A week later Trump signed Executive Order 13771, which directed administrative agencies to repeal two existing regulations for every new regulation they issue. Agency defenders expressed opposition to Trump's criticisms, saying that the bureaucracy exists to protect people against well-organized, well-funded interest groups.
Once upon a time, in a distant America, the words “greatest,” “exceptional,” and “indispensable” weren’t even part of the political vocabulary. American presidents didn’t bother to claim any of them for this country, largely because American wealth and global preeminence were so indisputable. We’re talking about the 1950s and early 1960s, the post-World War II and pre-Vietnam “golden” years of American power. Despite a certain hysteria about the supposed dangers of domestic communists, few Americans then doubted the singularly unchallengeable power and greatness of the country. It was such a given, in fact, that it was simply too self-evident for presidents to cite, hail, or praise.
Maybe Trump is talking about the period just after the Civil War, when the country was officially reunited after a painful Southern secession. Still, in 1873, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states could bar women from certain jobs, holding that Illinois didn't have to grant a married woman a license to practice law. "[C]ivil law, as well as nature herself, has always recognized a wide difference in the respective spheres and destinies of man and woman," wrote Supreme Court Justice Joseph P. Bradley in his concurrence. "Man is, or should be, woman's protector and defender. The natural and proper timidity and delicacy which belongs to the female sex evidently unfits it for many of the occupations of civil life." African-Americans were freed from slavery, but disease, neglect, and poverty meant that hundreds of thousands died in the immediate aftermath of emancipation. Those who survived saw their opportunities quickly narrow, as conservative, mostly Southern states passed a series of laws restricting the rights of black citizens. Black men could vote, but not black women; even for many black men, the promise of a vote was a mirage, as states set up nearly impossible-to-surmount barriers to African-American voting. Those barriers were wildly successful, and by the turn of the century, virtually no Southern blacks were able to cast a ballot and participate in the political process. The Ku Klux Klan was a powerful social and political force, effectively restoring white supremacy; African-Americans were terrorized, assaulted, lynched, and murdered, the murderers and assailants rarely prosecuted.
In Trump’s parlance, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who challenged Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primaries, is “Crazy Bernie.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) is “Pocahontas,” a reference to a decades-old claim she made to partial Native-American heritage. And “One percent Biden” refers to former Vice President Joe Biden’s ill-fated bid for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.
Jennifer Rubin, who the Washington Post fraudulently claims is a conservative, has become the most predictable mouthpiece for the insanity that has affected a certain brand of Republican. They view Trump as anathema to their values, so they have abandoned their values. Rubin was once favored moving our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. She now opposes it because of Trump. She once supported withdrawal from the Paris Accord, but now opposes it because of Trump.
After Trump dismissed FBI Director James Comey, the Justice Department appointed Robert Mueller as Special Counsel to investigate "any links and/or coordination" between the Trump campaign and the Russian government in its election interference. Trump has repeatedly denied accusations of collusion and obstruction of justice, calling the investigation a politically motivated "witch hunt".
Trump began acquiring and constructing golf courses in 1999; his first property was the Trump International Golf Club, West Palm Beach in Florida. By 2007, he owned four courses around the U.S. Following the financial crisis of 2007–2008, he began purchasing existing golf courses and re-designing them. His use of these courses during his presidency was controversial. Despite frequently criticizing his predecessor Barack Obama for his numerous golf outings, Trump golfed 11 times during his first eight weeks in office. According to CNN, Trump visited Trump-owned golf courses 91 times in 2017, although the White House does not disclose whether or not the president actually played on each of those visits.
Kamala Harris, a freshman California senator, has become a liberal rock star with her tough questioning of Jeff Sessions and other Trump administration officials during Senate hearings. It’s her record as California attorney general, her previous job, that could trip her up: She declined to prosecute OneWest, the bank once headed by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, for alleged foreclosure violations. Still, Ms. Harris seems the most promising of this group — not least because she has less of a voting record her opponents can use against her.
Of course, don’t furl the flag or shut down those offshore accounts or start writing the complete history of American decline quite yet. After all, the United States still looms “lone” on an ever more chaotic planet. Its wealth remains stunning, its economic clout something to behold, its tycoons the envy of the Earth, and its military beyond compare when it comes to how much and how destructively, even if not how successfully. Still, make no mistake about it, Donald Trump is a harbinger, however bizarre, of a new American century in which this country will indeed no longer be (with a bow to Muhammad Ali) “the Greatest” or, for all but a shrinking crew, exceptional.
Trump has even gone after Michael Avenatti, the lawyer for Stephanie Clifford, who makes porn movies under the name Stormy Daniels and says she was paid off to remain silent about a sexual encounter with Trump. Avenatti says he is exploring a 2020 Democratic bid generally viewed as a huge long shot. After Avenatti announced last week that he is representing a woman who has accused Kavanaugh of sexual misconduct, Trump banded him a “third-rate lawyer” and “total lowlife.”
The 2016 Republican presidential candidates and their surrogates sang the same tune. When Fox News pundit Sean Hannity asked Jeb Bush for his thoughts on exceptionalism, Bush replied, “I do believe in American exceptionalism,” unlike Obama, who “is disrespecting our history and the extraordinary nature of our country.” Rudy Giuliani was more explicit. “I do not believe that the president loves America,” he asserted, suggesting Obama did not think “we’re the most exceptional country in the world.” During a speech a month later in Selma, Alabama, the president pointed out that the ongoing fight for civil rights is a cornerstone of what makes America exceptional.
Trump appeared on the initial Forbes 400 list of richest Americans in 1982 with an estimated $200 million fortune shared with his father. Former Forbes reporter Jonathan Greenberg stated in 2018 that during the 1980s Trump had deceived him about his actual net worth and his share of the family assets in order to appear on the list. Trump made the Forbes World's Billionaires list for the first time in 1989, but he was dropped from the Forbes 400 from 1990 to 1995 following business losses. In 2005, Deutsche Bank loan documents pegged Trump's net worth at $788 million, while Forbes quoted $2.6 billion and journalist Tim O'Brien gave a range of $150 million to $250 million. In its 2018 billionaires ranking, Forbes estimated Trump's net worth at $3.1 billion[nb 1] (766th in the world, 248th in the U.S.) making him one of the richest politicians in American history. During the three years since Trump announced his presidential run in 2015, Forbes estimated his net worth declined 31% and his ranking fell 138 spots.
Donald Trump vows to "Make America Great Again," and on Tuesday, a good chunk of the Republican electorate implored him to do just that by handing him victories in Illinois, Florida, and North Carolina. If elected, Trump promises, he will restore America to its former glory and make life good again for Americans whose lives, Trump's campaign slogan implies, are no longer particularly good. For Trump's base of white, working-class men without college degrees, this message resonates: This used to be a great country for them, and now they are hurting. But for most Americans, the good old days weren't actually that good, and the "greatness" Trump talks about was delivered on the backs of large swaths of the American public. When Trump promises to "Make America Great Again," we should ask: Great for whom?