August 16, 2022

Trump expresses his frustration with his job: “I’d love to do it. Just drive the hell out of here.”

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Donald Trump may have renounced his New York roots by claiming his Florida residence at Mar-a-Lago as his official address, but his state tax-dodging residency issues aside, he reveals his upbringing as a New Yorker through the pale imitation of a Borscht Belt comedian that he delivers during his campaign rally speeches.


Take the routine that the president — as amateur in his comedic delivery as he is in the execution of his president duties — attempted to pull off at his Allentown, Pennsylvania rally this morning.

Mark Twain once said that “the secret source of humor is not joy, but sorrow.” In Donald Trump’s case, one can add desperation to that adage.

With the country in its third wave of COVID-19 infections that has brought the nation to the highest number of daily cases since the pandemic began, Trump’s campaign is flailing as the disparity between his false promises of a disappearing virus and the reality of health statistics becomes increasingly apparent.

The uniformly dismal predictions for Trump in the latest polling in the presidential race have elicited a dark current of fatalistic humor peppered between the lies and denialism of the president’s improvisatory stump speech.

Take a look at the latest batch of clips from the Allentown rally, courtesy of Vox‘s Aaron Rupar’s diligent mining on the Fox News feed, to see for yourself.

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Trump began by engaging in a bit of self-serving paranoia, insinuating that the only reason the media is even reporting about the COVID pandemic is to ensure his defeat.

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It’s difficult to determine which is more disturbing: the president’s mischaracterization of how renewable energy works (has this man never heard of a battery?) or the fact that the audience is giving him a laugh track-quality response to this lame material.

It’s even more disturbing to hear the audience cheer and laugh during a portion of his speech where Trump threatens to withhold aid to Pennsylvania in an extortionate move similar to the quid pro quo with Ukraine that resulted in his impeachment.

Hearing the crowd reaction to Trump suggesting that Montana should cancel their election because he’s so far ahead in that red state is perhaps the most chilling display of a disconnect between an offhand joke and its underlying implications that the public has experienced in the campaign to date.

Still, it must be difficult for the president to campaign for re-election when even his friendly broadcast partners at Fox News feel compelled to interrupt their coverage of his rally to interject with a bulletin noting the stock market plummeting because of Trump’s inability to address the mounting coronavirus cases and cut a stimulus deal with Congress.

This is Trump in full insult comic mode. Raise your hand if you think Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog does this much better than the president and is better looking to boot.

It’s just incredibly sad to realize that there are people who find this funny and laugh along with it.

Trump continued with his routine of criticizing his opponents rather than explaining how he would govern during a second term, largely because the only plans he seems to have made focus exclusively on his political survival and staying out of prison.

It wasn’t until the end of his appearance that Trump revealed his true desperation and underlying panic at his current situation.

How many of us would love to see Trump achieve his dream and hop in a truck and drive away forever?

Perhaps if he could learn to focus on other people being able to have a good life, he wouldn’t be in the predicament that he now finds himself in.

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Perhaps that’s why he’s trying to hone his comedy chops. He’s been a network TV star before, and now maybe he’s aiming at a Las Vegas residency for his new routines.

Who’s on first? We don’t know but we don’t want it to be Donald Trump.

Follow Vinnie Longobardo on Twitter. 

Original reporting by Aaron Rupar at Vox.

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Vinnie Longobardo

is the Managing Editor of Washington Press and a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile, & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music, and art.

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