A former speechwriter for George W. Bush said President Donald Trump’s tweets revealed he was lacking essential character traits, and he said Republicans should stop ignoring the growing evidence of a possible mental disorder.
Peter Wehner, who also previously served in the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations, told MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that his fellow Republicans should start publicly expressing the concerns they privately share about the president’s fitness for office.
“These tweets shouldn’t be ignored because I think they are an insight into a disordered personality,” said Wehner, author of the forthcoming book The Death of Politics: How to Heal Our Frayed Republic After Trump.
“These things speak to something deeply worrisome about this man,” he added. “It’s not just the narcissism, it’s the callousness, it’s the cruelty, it’s the vindictiveness, it’s the lack of shame. Those qualities are essential in human life, and they’re very important to have in a president.”
Tom Nichols, a professor at the U.S. Naval War College, said many of his fellow conservatives had abandoned their principles to cover for a corrupt president.
“People who now call themselves conservatives or Republicans have completely lost their moral bearings,” Nichols said. “At this point it’s about tribalism, it’s about making other people angry. They judge their success politically about how angry other people are no matter what it takes to get there, which is really not a political movement so much as it’s a kind of childish reflex that doesn’t really have any of ideology or political content to it.”
Nichols said the GOP had taken on the personality flaws demonstrated by the president.
“It’s mostly just an oppositional defiance disorder amongst an entire political party,” he said. “There’s a loss of decency amongst people who once prized things, or at least claimed to prize things like character, honor, decency, civility — that’s all gone now.”
Here are 3 winners and 3 losers from the 2020 Democratic presidential primary debate
Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined the other leading Democratic presidential primary candidates Wednesday night in the fieriest evening of the race so far.
His presence on the stage drew fire from the other candidates, but it also seemed to change the overall tone of the debate, with more attacks, counter-attacks, and passion than was generally seen earlier in the campaign.
Here’s a (necessarily subjective!) list of the winners and losers from the fray:
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) — Warren hit her stride right as the debate started by attacking Bloomberg for his record on the mistreatment of women, racist policies, and his tax returns. She repeatedly came back to skewer the former mayor, making herself the biggest and most notable presence in the debate. But importantly, she also continuously brought the discussion back to the issues she cares about — like expanding health care, environmental justice, and consumer protection — while getting in digs at the other candidates on the stage.
Michael Bloomberg ‘lost everything’ in Las Vegas: MSNBC analyst
Senior editor for "The Root," Jason Johnson, concluded that the biggest loser of the Democratic debate in Las Vegas Wednesday was Michael Bloomberg, but not merely because of his debate performance.
"The big new name was going to be Michael Bloomberg," he said. "This was probably the most expensive night in Vegas I've ever seen. He lost everything. This guy has spent $320 million. He had the opportunity to stand on stage, and appear to be an equal, and he looked bored. He looked disenchanted. He stumbled over obvious questions that anybody would have anticipated about sexual harassment and stop and frisk. I thought it was a bad night for him."
Pro-immigration protesters interrupt Joe Biden’s closing statement at debate
Former Vice President Joe Biden's closing statement was interrupted by protesters at Thursday night's Democratic presidential debate.
As Biden began his remarks, demonstrators began shouting about the Obama administration's record on deportations.
— NBC News (@NBCNews) February 20, 2020