President Donald Trump's allies have been sending around a kind of Facebook chain letter that proclaims no president in history has been scrutinized the way Trump is. As Conservative Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin explained, however, no president in history has ever reached quite the level of narcissism as Trump.
"No one could make up a character as narcissistic and lacking in human empathy as President Trump," Rubin wrote Monday, citing recent tweets by the president.
“President Trump is a ratings hit. Since reviving the daily White House briefing Mr. Trump and his coronavirus upda… https://t.co/bLGu66Jj55— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1585504116.0
I am a great friend and admirer of the Queen & the United Kingdom. It was reported that Harry and Meghan, who left… https://t.co/93TLGOURbX— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump)1585508426.0
During a serious time of crisis, while Americans are dying, Trump is focusing on politics, old feuds, and claiming doctors and nurses are lying about the number of masks and ventilators are needed.
The one consistency is that governors are begging for help and they have been for months.
"Our numbers are climbing exponentially. We knew it was a matter of time, not if COVID-19 would come to Michigan," said Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D-MI). "We took aggressive measures. We’ve been on the front end of aggressive measures that states have been taking, but we see this astronomical rise. We’ve got hospitals that are already at capacity. We’re running out of PPE as well. I’m grateful we got a shipment from FEMA yesterday for 112,000 N95 masks, but, you know, we’re going to be in dire straits again in a matter of days."
Similarly, Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-LA) revealed that the state will be out of ventilators by the first week of April.
Trump's top medical advisers are warning states and cities to prepare now the way New York is doing. Meanwhile, the president spent the morning on "Fox & Friends" ranting about windmills and attacking House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
"Republicans are already grumbling about the cost," wrote Rubin. "In any other presidency, the chief executive would call Congress back to work, propose a follow-on package and address the concerns governors raise repeatedly. Not this president. He’s obsessed with ratings. Congress likely will not return to Washington for several weeks. The death toll will rise, the economic hardship will deepen, and the governors’ logistical problems will become insoluble."
As a New York Times report revealed, had the government acted sooner, things would be a lot cheaper, easier and deaths would be lower.
"Increasingly, the country seems to operate on two tracks," Rubin explained. "On one, groveling courtiers flatter Trump, try to soften his impulsive pronouncements and scramble to catch up after months of delay. As they cater to the president, exploring patently absurd ideas, they have less attention to devote to real issues that only the federal government can address."
The second track, she said are governors who don't have the time or energy to bow to Trump's whims and digital battles.
"They are dealing hands-on with hundreds of logistical challenges, made worse by the absence of coordinated purchasing and by lack of a comprehensive testing program," she closed. "Thank goodness governors are actually doing their jobs, which increasingly entail navigating around Trump."