President Donald Trump doesn't have any public events scheduled on Thursday, and even during Veterans Day he only appeared at Arlington National Cemetary to touch the wreath laid for him at the tomb of the unknown soldier. He's spent the week largely rage-tweeting and demanding justice for his election loss.
Without a hint of sarcasm, MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell asked "what stage of denial is he in?"
White House correspondent Peter Alexander explained that as the count is finalized for states it is clear that Trump remains in a state of denial
He's "still in the residence as we speak this morning," reported Alexander. "He's been tweeting excessively over the course of the day, complaining about Fox News, which doesn't happen in a vacuum. There's new reporting today by a separate outlet saying among other things that the president is considering a digital media empire going forward after this. But that's the sense that I get in conversations with aides and allies. One White House official telling me that the president is very aware that there is no path to victory, but that he is in effect trying to give -- he says, to his 72 million voters, those who voted for him, deserve a fight. So, this battle right now is almost a form of theater for them."
There were meetings with Trump on Wednesday, Alexander said, about the next steps for him. The aides are paving the way to "tougher conversations to begin" about his loss and the need for him to leave the White House.
"Vice President Mike Pence meeting today for lunch with the president, Secretary [Steve] Mnuchin, Secretary [Mike] Pompeo also meeting with the president over the course of this day. But as we have heard him amplifying on Twitter, he still is citing a variety of things just not based in fact. He says in Arizona, if there were an audit, he would come back and win the race there. Yesterday we heard from the Republican Arizona attorney general saying there was no evidence and no facts that give them any reason to believe that the race in Arizona would be overturned."
One step for Trump is that he's also now started a leadership PAC where he can continue to play in politics.
"As he looks to his own future, I'm struck by what one of his aides said to me in recent days, they said, consider all the monetization, the commercialization opportunities for this president right now," quoted Alexander. "'His brand has never been so big.' This trump ally said to me, you could have Trump Riyadh, even Trump Moscow that he's wanted all these years, Andrea."
Trump's luxury hotels, resorts, golf courses and condos have failed to earn him enough money to offset the mounting debt he faces coming out of the presidency. His supporters often don't have the funds available to stay at his properties or join his exclusive clubs. Even Donald Trump Jr. couldn't score huge profits off of his book "Triggered," instead having the Republican Party and his father's campaign buy copies to give away.
See the interview with Peter Alexander below: