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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020


In Defying the Odds, we discuss the 2016 campaign. The 2019 update includes a chapter on the 2018 midterms. The 2020 race, the subject of our next book, is well under  way.   

Remarks by President Trump, Vice President Pence, and Members of the Coronavirus Task Force in Press Briefing: April 27, 2020.
Q    Maryland and other states — Governor Larry Hogan specifically said they’ve seen a spike in people using disinfectant after your comments last week.  I know you said they were sarcastic, but do you take any —
THE PRESIDENT:  I can’t imagine why.  I can’t imagine why.  Yeah.
Q    Do you yeah take any responsibility if someone were to die?
THE PRESIDENT:  No, I don’t.  No, I can’t imagine — I can’t imagine that.
 Katie Rogers and Annie Karni at NYT:
The daily White House coronavirus task force briefing is the one portion of the day that Mr. Trump looks forward to, although even Republicans say that the two hours of political attacks, grievances and falsehoods by the president are hurting him politically.

Mr. Trump will hear none of it. Aides say he views them as prime-time shows that are the best substitute for the rallies he can no longer attend but craves.

Mr. Trump rarely attends the task force meetings that precede the briefings, and he typically does not prepare before he steps in front of the cameras. He is often seeing the final version of the day’s main talking points that aides have prepared for him for the first time although aides said he makes tweaks with a Sharpie just before he reads them live. He hastily plows through them, usually in a monotone, in order to get to the question-and-answer bullying session with reporters that he relishes.
 Kevin Liptak and Kaitlan Collins at CNN:
This week, aides seemed to coalesce around a decision to curtail the daily press briefings, which have become airing grounds for the grievances Trump builds up over the course of the day, starting early in the morning as he watches television in his residence.
Speaking to foreign leaders from the third floor of the White House, Trump has attempted to adopt a statesmanlike air, according to people familiar with the calls. But even there, his complaints about not receiving positive recognition for his efforts have seeped in.
While he almost always attends the daily press briefings, Trump rarely attends the coronavirus task force meetings that precede them. The task force doesn't seem to mind.

President Donald Trump left Friday’s coronavirus task force briefing without taking a single question just a day after stunning medical experts by using the daily briefing to float bizarre and dangerous ideas about possible coronavirus treatments, like injecting disinfectants.

Reporters tried to shout questions at the president to no avail Friday as Trump ended what was an abnormally short briefing. The entire briefing, which featured Trump talking at the start, lasted roughly 20 minutes.