A former speechwriter for President George W. Bush has written a startling essay that argues President Donald Trump sees himself as a "wartime leader" who is leading an attack on his own citizens.
In his latest piece in The Atlantic, David Frum argues that Trump's divisive speech at the White House on Thursday "proved once again that he regards himself as a wartime leader of Red America against Blue America."
In particular, he was struck by the way Trump made the White House itself into a partisan symbol by telling the crowd of his political opponents, "The fact is, we’re here and they’re not."
Frum argues that Trump is setting himself up as the true leader of a massive portion of the United States populace even if he loses the general election in November.
"Trump is a secessionist from the top," he argues. "That’s how he can describe riot and disorder as happening in 'Biden’s America,' even when it happens under his presidency. In his mind, the majority of the country is already 'Biden’s America,' even before Biden enters office—and the remainder of it will continue to be 'Trump’s America,' even should Trump leave office."