On CNN Saturday, Washington Post reporter David Swerdlick walked through the potential damage of outgoing President Donald Trump's chaotic behavior on both domestic and foreign affairs.
"What is the next month and a half or two going to look like if this is the tone and tenor set by the president during this lame-duck session?" asked anchor Fredricka Whitfield. "The president continues to deny he lost the election and appears to be doing everything he can to create problems for the incoming Biden administration, including ending a federal lending program to help struggling businesses. The president withdrawing troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, cracking down on China, and appearing to show no interest whatsoever in a COVID stimulus bill. I mean, does he not realize how damaging this is for him trying to cement a more positive legacy?"
"Fred, it's already ugly, as we know, and it could definitely get uglier," said Swerdlick. "I mean, apart from these sort of sore-loserism and crybabyism that we've come to expect from President Trump in some of these situations, both before and during his presidency, you have the situation as you described where there is a budget deadline looming, there could be a shutdown. Democrats and Republicans aren't on the same page yet and we're heading into that in early December. You have a situation where the president is pulling troops out of Afghanistan, and no matter which side of that issue you're on, the reality is that they were there for a reason ... and then you have the news in the last day or so of Secretary Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, clawing back money from the fed that was — that still potentially could go to small businesses and municipalities to help them with the coronavirus pandemic."
"It may not be a grand plan or a conspiracy to salt the soil, but it sure does start to look that way, especially if the administration and the president's campaign persists in pretending they didn't win the election past the day that some of these key swing states certify their results," added Swerdlick. "He is the president of the United States until midday on January 20th, and that's a lot of time for a lot of mischief."