On Friday, The New Yorker's Susan Glasser reported that a senior national security official had a dire description of how bad a second Donald Trump term would be if he wins back the presidency in 2024.
"Writing the book, though an exercise in looking back, did offer some strong hints about what another four years of Trump in office might look like," wrote Susan Glasser. "I am thinking in particular of a chilling conversation I had with a former senior national-security official who regularly observed Trump in the Oval Office. The official compared him to the velociraptors in the movie 'Jurassic Park,' horror-movie monsters who proved capable of learning while hunting their prey — a terrifying fact the audience learns when one of the predators chases a child into a kitchen by turning the handle to open the door."
It's fairly easy to predict what Trump would do in office, argued Glasser, because many of his deepest-held convictions were consistent through his first four years. He has consistently signaled he wants to withdraw from NATO, for example — and use the Justice Department to go after political critics.
"In the fall of 2020, he even explicitly demanded that the Justice Department jail Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Joe Biden, weeks before the election," wrote Glasser. "'Where are all the arrests?' he tweeted on October 7th, 2020. We are on notice. He will try this again if given the chance."
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And to help him facilitate all this, Trump has plans to decimate civil service protections to stack the government with yes-men. In particular, he could restore an executive order that classifies most federal employees under a process known as "Schedule F," which allows the president to dismiss them at will — something that violates the intent of civil service reforms stretching back to the 19th century to prevent presidents from trading government jobs for favors.
"The man who finished his Presidency with a total of 30,573 false and misleading claims while in office, according to the Washington Post’s fact-checking project, is not going to suddenly return to power as a truthteller," concluded Glasser. "He will seek vengeance and vindication. He will run the same plays again and again. He will find aides and advisers who will do his bidding, unlike the faithless traitors who surrounded him before. The velociraptor will have learned to open the door."
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