Rick Wilson: 'Lil Dictator' Trump's church and tear-gas photo-op was a 'pathetic' failure

In his typically scathing style, conservative campaign consultant Rick Wilson wrote that a "humiliated" Donald Trump tried to make all the mockery of his hiding in a bunker go away with his photo-op church visit late Monday and it flopped in a big way making him look "pathetic."


In his Daily Beast column, Wilson dropped the hammer on the president for flailing away because he is overwhelmed by the George Floyd protests and hoped to change the narrative by looking resolute with his nationally televised publicity stunt-- and failed badly in the process.

"The weekend did not go well for Donald Trump, and he emerged into a sunny first day of June humiliated by his weakness, cowardice, and inability to face up to any crisis more complex than 'Why is my Filet-O-Fish cold?'" Wilson wrote. "The man sporting the world’s most delicate ego knows the worst thing for any wannabe Maximum Leader is mockery, and America’s derision was pouring down after a weekend taunt blew up into the hashtag #BunkerBitch and trended worldwide. Like many things that set off cascades of Trump’s bad decisions—porn starlets, breakfast buffets, shady real estate deals, and Steve Bannon—he reacted as badly as one might expect to the derision, with the tantrums we saw Monday. "

Noting the reports of the president yelling at governors in a phone call that they are "weak" when it comes to dealing with protests in their states, Wilson wrote, "I’d pay good Bitcoin to have seen the expressions on the governors’ faces as a man as physically weak and personally cowardly as Trump berated them for failing to stop the national unrest. The thought of Trump directing governors like some kind of Rascal Scooter generalissimo was rich; these are men and women who’ve been fighting COVID-19 and civil unrest for months now, and their collective eye-rolling today must have altered the orbit of the planet in some measurable way."

He then turned to the church visit stunt that seems to have blown up in the president's face as cable networks simultaneously showed footage of federal law officials tear-gassing peaceful protesters just so the president could get a photo-op to salvage the day.

"It was the hastily organized rant-and-stroll that made a mark on Trump’s Lil Dictator’s copybook today. What was supposed to look powerful, commanding, and terrifying to MAGA world’s latest constellation of imaginary enemies—Commie leftist agitators! Saboteurs! Professional anarchists! Antifaaaaaa!—looked like the angry rantings of a grandpa ready to head to the Old Strongman’s Home for rice pudding and a nice rest," the conservative wrote. "Driven by a fear of continued mockery more potent than his cowardice in the face of noisy protesters, Trump then gave a feat of masculine virtue by walking two entire blocks from the White House to St. John’s Episcopal Church."

Wilkson then described what the world saw.

"Trump, brick-red and sweating like a hog caught in a gate, then stood before the beautiful “Church of the Presidents” for a photo-op moment intended strictly for his evangelical base that provided incontrovertible proof God is dead, or at least napping, as he held aloft the Bible and didn’t turn into a pillar of salt or leave a smoking hole where the lightning bolt struck," he described. "The awkward lineup of the Average White Administration in front of the boarded-up church was made all the more awkward by the distant sound of flashbangs exploding on unarmed and nonviolent protesters a few blocks away. Just after they departed, the bishop of the diocese said she was “outraged” the president had used the church as a prop."

According to Wilson, Trump tried to appear calm and cool under pressure like some of his predecessors and came up way short.

"During the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, John F. Kennedy stayed at the White House even as nuclear tensions grew closer to explosion than at any point in our history. Richard Nixon, during the most heated moments of the Vietnam War, spent a long evening on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, talking with anti-war protesters. On 9/11, George W. Bush insisted that the Secret Service allow him to return to Washington, D.C., even as the attack continued and American intelligence was running blind," he wrote. " Now Trump has left his bunker to take a picture after a small army roughed up and drove off anyone with a voice to speak against him. Not exactly a profile in courage."

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