We Will Never, Ever Be Rid of Donald Trump

There is no black Sharpie to write him out of our consciousness.

Comments: 223

  1. Yes, Trump will be an unpleasant memory for a long, long time, but if he's out of office we can live with it. But because of him, we now know that 40% of our citizens voted for an unprincipled moron in the last election, and, given the chance, they will do it again in the future. That nightmare is not going away.

  2. @Migrant Actually that 40% figure is way off. It was far less than one-third and that's the number that Democrats need to focus on. *Only 61.4% of voting age citizens reported that they even bothered to show up to vote in 2016. * Of them, 46.1% voted for trump. *That means that only slightly >28% of us voted for him. Add in the grossly unfair Electoral College factor and that's what got us here. Democrats need to focus on getting more voters to turn out and find a way to eliminate or work around the EC via National Popular Vote.

  3. @Migrant How correct you are. if only willful ignorance were against the law.

  4. @jar What is scary is that 38.6% didn't even bother or were frozen out of the process.

  5. "We will never, ever be rid of him." Not sure about that. Could be that the Southern District of New York AG office has other ideas. Just get Trump out of the Presidency and let them start the ball rolling. Generally speaking, once in a federal prison, its out of sight, out of mind.

  6. @cherrylog754 I so hope that you are right.

  7. @cherrylog754 From your lips to God's ears.

  8. @cherrylog754 Hear, hear! I, one of many I am sure, want to see Trump and his ilk prosecuted to fullest extent … emoluments charges alone have much to keep the courts busy. I also wish to see to what extent the GOP stacking of the courts plays going forward. How much deliberate obfuscation and confusion will the courts get away with when confronted with a glut of criminal indictments. You can remove a Supreme Court Justice by impeachment as well and that begs a Trump/Kavanaugh double billing when the impeachment proceedings get to sexual harassment charges.

  9. Another reason why he has to go to jail for his crimes. Only that will give us a respite from this man.

  10. @MsQwerty No tweeting in jail.

  11. Well put. I believe that well over half the country - myself included - will long suffer from the effects of PTSD: Post-Trump Stress Disorder. It will take a huge amount of therapy to overcome.

  12. @Bruce The only "therapy" I'll need is to see a moving van arriving at the White House, federal agents with a pair of handcuffs right behind it, and pictures of the crowd size when our next president is inaugurated.

  13. Once he is a former president, his Twitter account can FINALLY be shut down for years of baldly violating Twitter’s terms of service. That would do as much as anything else to shut him up. Same for his three eldest children once they are no longer presidential progeny.

  14. Why can't it be shut down *now* for violating terms of service?

  15. @polymath Twitter has specifically stated that it will not shut his account down "because" he's the president.

  16. I prefer the thought of Trump's machinations from outside the White House to one where he's given a chance at a third and fourth term, a scenario to which he "jokingly" refers again and again (in concert with his campaign manager referring to a Trump dynasty). Trump's Orwellian attack on the truth has set the stage for him to question the results of any election, in 2020 or beyond. At least if Trump is limited to a media outlet, the public will be able to change the channel.

  17. Don't lose all hope. I don't think they let you tweet in prison and you certainly can't start a tv station while you're doing hard time. Because if we are going to abolish traditional presidential norms, then let's start with an indictment, trial, and conviction.

  18. He needs to be greeted by a phalanx of federal and state agents ten seconds after his so-called presidency elapses, and escorted to prison to await trial, or better, trials. Then his smartphone can be wrung out of his small, cold hands, never to be used again, except perhaps for display in a museum. This is enormously urgent. I hope our agencies are thinking of their responsibility to uphold the laws of this country, and of their sworn oaths to defend this country against adversaries foreign--and domestic.

  19. @Michael Chorost I predict that on Jan. 19, 2021, the newspapers will report that the Trump clan boarded and airplane and left the U.S. for parts unknown, probably a country that will not extradite them, such as Saudi Arabia or Russia. Op-ed writers will note that it was the largest group to flee America since the Saudi royals after 9/11.

  20. @Michael Chorost Hear hear!!

  21. @rljohnson What interest would either of those countries have in him if he's no longer in office?

  22. There’s another way to regard the Liar-In-Chief ... he has shown all of us some, perhaps all, of the weaknesses of adhering to old ideas. Awful & repugnant though I find his ideas to be, he has given us many teachable moments if we want to limit the powers of the presidency.

  23. Thanks, Bruni. I was having a good day...

  24. If Trump is defeated in 2020 he will claim the vote was rigged and declare a national emergency so as to cling to power. His sycophants will applaud him. This is the only way he can stay out of jail.

  25. @Cassandra Another way for him to stay our of a federal penitentiary is to bow out of the 2020 election and help elect another republican who would pardon him. His wealth could make state charges go away or defeat them. Viola, he remains free and legally unblemished (in his mind) to live out his days. I expect his ego will not permit this and I'm not sure how I feel about this possible outcome.

  26. Can we get a law passed that will ban his picture from the list of presidents in the back of every US history textbook?

  27. @dude Also, ban his portrait from the White House.

  28. The GOP can never really clean up after Trump, and we will have remnants of him on our heels for a very long time.

  29. Trump is the legacy of Republican election corruption. The Republican leadership knew Trump was incapable of managing a two car parade but they used their gerrymandering and voter suppression tactics to place him in office with Russian help. Worse even than the Trumpian chaos is the continued Republican sellout of our democracy in favor of their corporate owners. Unless and until we put a stop to Republican control of the Supreme Court, the White House and the Senate there will be more Trumps in the inevitably dismal future of the United States

  30. He has fundamentally changed the foundation of political discourse. I need a dog like Frank Bruni to ease my pain and help me connect to people without this automatic turn to divisiveness.

  31. Dear Frank, You make the naive assumption that in January 2021, having lost the election, our Donald will leave the White House willingly. What's to keep him from claiming that the election results were fraud, that he won and that he intends to stay in office. Who will stop him? The Secret Service? The army? Assuming for a moment that the duly elected president will go ahead with transition efforts, where will the swearing in ceremony be held? In secret, fearing the armed mobs of Trumpsters who will surround the White House to protect their fearless leader? Let the innocent scales fall from your eyes and start thinking about it.

  32. @oldchemprof My fear exactly!

  33. @oldchemprof Worse, my friend, do your best to keep from thinking what he will do with the two and a half months left in his presidency if he does lose. Michael Cohen told Congress at the end of his testimony that Trump will not leave if he is defeated. If he wins he wins. If he loses he wins. Only if he suffers a masssive coronary before next November will the country be saved.

  34. @oldchemprof With no claim on the presidency, Trump will be removed from the White House by Military Police. They're unsentimental and follow the rule of law.

  35. With any luck, he'll be in prison.

  36. "He won’t be at an easel in remote Texas, like George W. Bush. He won’t be biting his tongue and taking big, deep, centering breaths, like Barack Obama." No - hopefully he will be in jail.

  37. @Michael Question: will the Secret Service have to accompany him to Attica after conviction on unpardonable State charges?

  38. @Michael He certainly won't be anything at all like Jimmy Carter.

  39. When justice is served, I still think it is a good idea to banish him to his golf course in Scotland where his tweets merely go in to the wind. Let the whole family go live in Brigadoon. Swallowed by legend.

  40. @Colbert Trust me, we have a house nearby, he is hated by a huge majority of the Scots!

  41. Once he is no longer President, Trump can finally get off his restrictive diet and really let himself go. The sting that he is no longer President will make food an even greater consolation and it won't be long until he's tweeting his bile exclusively from an industrial strength mattress. It won't be a pretty sight, not even for his remaining supporters.

  42. I'm not sure they allow prison inmates to have phones... or Twitter.

  43. @DASW Exactly!

  44. @DASW No McDonald's either.

  45. Or, the actual media of the United States could do something never before done. It would be the equivalent of the moon landing, but it could be done. They could band resources together somehow and figure out a way to drown out and dismember Fox News and all of the other platforms that are producing the propaganda that tearing out country apart. Instead of howling about Trump, you have to come up with a solution. We need some greatness and we need it now. Do you have any? Media companies? Are you out there?

  46. What, you think the Donald is immortal? The atoms that compose his body will just reconfigure into something else...so only in that sense, like the rest of us, might he become eternal.

  47. @Martha Goff He can do a lot before he goes, a lot of damage.

  48. "Lock him up!" Plenty of evidence to convene a post-presidency indictment and trial.

  49. @logic Certainly Trump makes you wonder whether the norm of not prosecuting a political opponent should be absolute. In his case the law breaking might be evident independent of any politics.

  50. @logic Yes, lock him up. There are a bunch of lawyers running for president on the Democratic ticket. He sure as heck won't get a pardon from any of them -- or even the ones that aren't lawyers. Pelosi needs to get this jerk impeached -- and fast. Let the chips fall where they may with the Senate and let the GOP senators show their true colors. It'll happen. Keep the faith.

  51. Please. The man is 73 years old, never exercises (due to his brilliant theory that we are all born with a finite amount of energy), is overweight, and has always had horrendous eating habits. I'll let the actuaries take it from here.

  52. @200F - then the question is, how does the GOP spin his legacy? They all fondly remember Reagan through rose-colored glasses. Just don't make me fly through Donald Trump Int'l Airport - unless IATA re-codes the airport as DMP (will also accept ICAO re-naming it DUMP).

  53. @200F Generally, I'd agree that a lifestyle like his should take a severe physical toll. But trump thrives on hate and cruelty, both of which serve to energize him. I'm afraid we're looking the mutant orange equivalent of the energizer bunny,

  54. @200F But he's a billionaire. Life expectancy for rich men in the USA, last time I consulted it some years ago, was 80 years. So, he has at least 6-7 more years.

  55. I was just thinking this morning how I look forward to the day when I never have to see a photo of him, hear him (try to) speak or post another tweet. No matter how it happens, whether I go before he does, I will still look forward to that moment.

  56. "We will never, ever be rid of him ... he’ll be tweeting, bleating, ranting and raging in precisely the manner that he is now, just without the nuclear codes. " He'll also be giving depositions, settling lawsuits, declaring bankruptcy, turning on the people closest to him, and feeling sorry for himself. Trump has spent his life crossing legal lines and his presidency attacking our democracy. That won't be forgiven. Does he think he gets to to sail off into the sunset? That he can return to his life of financial shenanigans and be left alone to grift, chisel, and evade? That his "brand" , now forever associated with racism, lies, and incompetence is going to make him billions in real estate? Help him hawk golf club memberships? Collect license fees by putting his toxic name on high end merchandise? Go international? Trump may start a media enterprise to continue to attack our democracy. But democracy isn't done with Trump either. Trump will never, ever, be rid of his legal and financial troubles.

  57. @LT and we can hope that even after he leaves the planet we will hold his family and the folks that allowed them to come into our lives are harassed and or prosecuted until they just go away

  58. @LT "Trump will never, ever, be rid of his legal and financial troubles." He crafted his own and his family's destiny. Uncovered, sociopath narcissists are buried by that weight.

  59. @LT You closed with, "Trump will never, ever, be rid of his legal and financial troubles." Unless he remains President. I am losing sleep imagining the things Donald Trump will do to stay out of prison.

  60. Trump needn’t say one word after leaving the White House. His spawn need not seek public office. The federal court system is being packed with young, inexperienced, dogmatic ‘conservatives’ who will shape this nation’s laws for a generation. No matter what, we’re going to live with that. Because her emails. Hey, she’ll win anyway, I don’t need to vote. I wanted Bernie.

  61. Perhaps insulting progressives is not the best strategy since obviously Dems can’t win without progressives.

  62. Wrong Frank. He will be cleaning toilets in a jail. He will be charged on multiple state crimes related to improper financial dealings and false loan applications and such (see Jared Kushner's father) and he will be convicted on multiple counts. This does not end well for him or his family.

  63. @DS I so wish that were true. But Trump will never see a day in jail, due to his advanced age, wealth, & influence. Former presidents don’t go to prison.

  64. @DS I so wish that were true. But Trump will never see a day in jail, due to his advantaged aged, wealth, & influence. Former presidents don’t go to prison.

  65. @Caroline Fraiser There is always a first time.

  66. I’m not so sure we’ll never be rid of him. The only reason he’s running for reelection is to stay out of jail, and when he loses by numbers large enough to be undeniable (though he’ll try), the Southern District of New York will move in, and this scourge on public life will finally be facing the reality of being held responsible — and sent to jail for — a lifetime of scandal, theft, graft and unscrupulous business ventures. Facing that, I predict he’ll flee the country, either to Russia or somewhere else where there’s no extradition treaty; the SDNY should consider him a flight risk and have him arrested the very second the election is called.

  67. @John H Love your comment, but your very comment should tell us all why he will NOT leave if he loses.

  68. @John H If he loses he will still be with us until January 2021. A liminal period when he will still be able to exercise the powers of the Presidency to wreak havoc on the Nation and the World that failed to deify him. He must be impeached and removed at that moment for his vengeance will know no bounds.

  69. @John H Since we can be pretty sure the Dems will never actually get around to impeaching him, the so-called president remains in office until 1200 hours on January 20, 2021. But, as previously noted, he could be arrested as soon as 46 takes the oath of office, since he will be a private citizen at that point.

  70. There could be a truly dangerous time between Election and Inauguration days during which the very, very, very bad President could cause irreparable chaos, with even less inhibition than we see now. Come Senators, heed the call: the House must now impeach, and the Senate must act.

  71. Let's be honest here, much worse things (genocide, slavery) had happened in this country. So, it's not like Trump would shock the country out of self-recognition. Trump would be gone (hopefully, shortly), and the country continues to drudge on to its destination of a more perfect union. Trump is such a foul creature, but then this country is no stranger to foul things.

  72. @Daniel Solomon Great post, thanks for bringing some perspective.

  73. @Daniel Solomon whats he done that is foul ? take a look at the bunch that were running the FBI - now that is foul.

  74. @Daniel Solomon As Joe Biden has said, we're better than that! Now we need someone competent to demonstrate it. My winning ticket? Liz Warren and Mitch Landrieu. As for Trump? Lock him up! He sets an example for what a free man must NEVER be. Time, once again, to move on.

  75. Right you are, Mr. Bruni. Even if he loses (a long shot), the fear, paranoia and destruction he has caused will frighten at least the next two generations until it's time for them to finally come out of their caves and allow themselves to readjust to what used to be called normalcy. Trump's irrelevance will cause him to self destruct even further yet not threaten anyone else. In with a bang, out with a whimper. Let's make sure. Vote.

  76. I hope that after Trump loses the 2020 election that Congress votes to impeach and remove him. That way he will forever be ineligible to hold any US office AND not be eligible for a government pension. He can retreat to Trump Tower and hide there.

  77. @Max No need to impeach if he loses in 2020. I expect he will continue to bill us for his post presidential security costs, which will likely be millions more. I expect every single one of his properties will need security "upgrades" in anticipation of a potential visit.

  78. He won't be able to con the grim reaper, and when it is his time, he will fade away from the public consciousness surprisingly fast.

  79. @GMR Let us hope.

  80. @GMR: The Grim Reaper may not come for Trump for many, many years. He'll be able to do much more damage during all that time, regardless of whether or not his mental state continues to deteriorate. His cult-like base doesn't care about his waning ability to think or communicate clearly. In fact, the less coherent he is, the better they like him.

  81. Bravo. This piece is stellar in its unabashed assessment of the man who has done what Nazis and communists could not; bring down American democracy with his horrifying, megalomaniac, hideous personality. trump is the national car wreck, and we are the rubberneckers.

  82. @Maggie Sawyer. Trump does not act alone. Every Republican legislator and every person who accepts an appointment and continues to work for Trump is an enabler of the destruction of the democracy through false information, through elimination of federal laws and rules that protect the public and the environment.

  83. I wish it were so, but unfortunately Trump's post-president power won't be "fictive" with lots of his followers. It will be child's play for Trump to incite them, or better, ignite them. To think violence is beyond the pale in the context of a Trump loss in 2020 is, I think, to be naive. He'll have sway with tens of millions until he dies.

  84. Yes Trump will be horrible once he’s out of office, but don’t be ridiculously paranoid about a Trump dynasty. Go wring your hands in private.

  85. Unless you can get rid of all of the angry uneducated resentful white men (and women) in this country who think Trump talks like them, you’re right. We’re never getting rid of Trump and his ilk. What kind of bubble was I in not to realize just how many of these white angry people there are!

  86. @RC, and they're not all uneducated...but they are angry. Which makes them even more dangerous and they've been given a license to act by this president.

  87. @Tbird57 Also they have been given a license to carry AR-15's and buy them in bulk!

  88. This qualifies as the most depressing headline I have in my lifetime ever read.

  89. That is the most depressing article I have read in months.

  90. All this doesn't take dementia into account. Eventually his kids will make sure his phone isn't connected to anything and his TV is playing reruns.

  91. My profound hope is that our new Democratic president will not pull a "Gerry Ford" and pardon Trump to "bring the country together." Between NY State and the Feds, Trump will be charged will all kinds of financial fraud. And when he finally does that "perp walk" and prison begins, Trump's white noise will calm considerably. Let's hope he fades as fast as Sarah Palin.....no doubt Melania will divorce the Donald faster than the Palins did each other.

  92. @Concerned Woman I believe Joe Biden would pardon Donald Trump. I do not believe Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren would pardon Donald Trump. Vote accordingly.

  93. @Concerned Woman Pardons only apply to Federal crimes. Whatever the State of New York does to him can't be pardoned away.

  94. @fast/furious Blue all the way Fast ....please

  95. We have had epically horrible leaders before. Think Andrew Johnson as just one example. We will get through this. Our Constitution, built on deep skepticism and a profound mistrust of excessive power by individuals and institutions, will keep Trump in check and our country sound.

  96. @Mark Siegel repubs in the senate don't think that way. Led by mitch the turtle, they seek to punish us for twice electing President Obama.

  97. If Democrats were to successfully remove Trump from office before Nov 3rd 2020, I believe Trump would continue to run, and would perhaps win the presidency back. If Trump loses in 2020 (or is removed before his second term is halfway through) he will run again in 2024. Why wouldn’t he? It would make for extremely compelling news coverage, he loves the adoration at the rallies, and there’s a decent chance he would win the nomination. Trump will continue to wield the most powerful voice in the Republican Party, inside the White House or out. Republican politicians will need his approval to win elections and to implement policies, as, according to a recent Harvard-Harris poll, almost twice as many Republicans support Donald Trump as support the Republican Party.

  98. Trump appears more and more demented with each passing day. I have plenty of concerns about his willingness to leave office and the potential for violence that would follow a electoral loss. But I would be genuinely surprised if he has the capacity to continue for long in public life...even within this presidential term. He is steadily losing language skills. Reagan seemed clearly to be losing it in his second term and “surprise!” It turned out he actually did have dementia. Trump is not immortal but even if he lives to be 100 I don’t think he will have all his faculties for much longer. This does not, by the way, give me less anxiety about our current situation.

  99. @Karen Your comment suggests he had adequate language skills in the first place, I think it’s possible his lack there of is what endeared him to many, ranting is so much easier than explaining, let alone, understanding , and so that is what we get in a “representative democracy”. I also suffer no small degree of anxiety over the time it will take to live through/past this.

  100. @Suzanne: Trump’s language skills were actually much better when he was younger. There’s footage to prove it.

  101. @Karen: You're implying his faculties are in place now. I predict the word salad continues to grow and by election day he's totally bonkers! Hey, one can hope!

  102. Hey Frank - you need a vacation.

  103. And we’re stuck with his supporters too. Those angry, screaming people who are worshipping a false idol. Or should I say, a FAKE idol.

  104. Hold the despair, Mr. Bruni! When he’s the ex president and if he escapes prosecution, he can streak down 5th Avenue if he wants, no one will care. We will not have to pay attention to his rants or worry about what he will break next. I have already started practicing. I didn’t even know he staged another rally in North Carolina last night. At this moment, his candidate is behind the Democrat. Other former presidents have established libraries, what does he have for his? Executive orders signed with sharpies and signatures that look like EKG’s and Kim jong Un’s love letters? Why don’t we back up and just savor the thought of him as ex president.

  105. i bet they don't let him tweet from prison. And I think that's where he's going.

  106. “He pressed that narrative in 2016 even though he was declared the victor.” Donald Trump’s progeny weren’t the only ones who weren’t counting on him becoming the 45th president. What Donald himself had been counting on was a narrative of a stolen election. He had been building towards that theme when he declared that a whole system was rigged against him and encouraged his supporters to monitor fraud at voting stations. Trump wanted to have it both ways; he wanted to avoid both the embarrassment of losing and the responsibility of winning. His complete devotion to his ego and disregard for the weight of the White House haven’t changed since. No rising to the occasion, only pulling others down to his base ways. We’ve got to get back up from his depths and continue upwards to, yes, get over him.

  107. Herbert Hoover was vilified, probably undeservedly, for years after the crash of 1929, after presiding over the early years of the Great Depression. If there is a God, let's hope that Trump is equally vilified. However, let's hope the US doesn't have to undergo as severe a crash for this to happen.

  108. Ultimately, Donald Trump will be found out for the charlatan that he is. He is obviously guilty of grift and tax fraud. There is significant evidence in the Mueller Report of his obstruction of justice. It is quite probable that Trump is a major money launderer for Putin and his Russian mafia. With any luck, after Trump is expelled from the White House, he will be charged for his criminal past, go to trial, be convicted and then spend the rest of his life in a jail where tweeting is not allowed. When that happens, we shall be " … rid of Donald Trump".

  109. Stone walls do not a prison make Nor iron bars a cage Mouths silenced as a wake Doth do sentence Donnie eternal rage.

  110. I’m still not over President Obama and his beautiful family.

  111. @NM i'm reading books by Obama staffers to remember what it was like before this horror show began.

  112. It could be worse. How’d you like to be the Secret Service officers assigned to former President Trump and his family?

  113. The press does not talk about my tweets because I am a nobody. When he is out of office the press should give him the same lack of interest.

  114. Odds are he won't consistently seek the spotlight from either prison or fighting extradition from another country. My money is on Israel unless they elect a new prime minister. I would also not rule out Trump resigning a few days early to get a pardon from Pence, but this will not address state charges.

  115. Perhaps the media will be less inclined to report on Trump's every tweet, quote, burp and pen swipe if he is out of the oval office since he will no longer be directly affecting public policy. Let's hope the focus moves very quickly to another entree in the average American's media diet.

  116. His not having the nuclear codes will be a huge relief. The author is correct that we will never be the same. If the nation survives until the 2020 election, we can work to rein in massive imbalances between the 3 branches of government. We assumed that we would never elect a president so corrupt and inept as Trump. The nation needs to never make that assumption again.

  117. @Katydid I agree, and speaking of the 3 branches, this column doesn't even mention the courts, the huge number of Trump judicial appointments -- young, right wing political hacks -- now judges for life. Long after Trump is gone, we'll be stuck with them in the lower federal courts, as well as (so far) Gorsuch and Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court. This travesty doesn't get nearly enough attention.

  118. @Jean More than the courts, it's the poisoning of the stream of public discourse. All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten that malicious bit of handiwork. It will persist for a very long time, unless we learn how to handle the truth.

  119. @Katydid The imbalances in our government are not due to Trump. They are due to the conniving, partisan extremist Republican Party.

  120. "We will never, ever be rid of him ... he’ll be tweeting, bleating, ranting and raging in precisely the manner that he is now, just without the nuclear codes. " He’ll be an ex-president, without the power to affect people's lives. There’ll no longer be any reason for the media to pay him any mind.

  121. I respectfully disagree with Frank Bruno on his analysis, my first time for a columnist I truly admire. When Trump is gone, and that time will come in just over a year or sooner, his bully pulpit is gone too. Trump’s worst day ever is when he is ignored by the mainstream media, an inevitable comeuppance he will experience when he becomes an ordinary citizen, or inmate. Yes, the progeny will still be covered, Ivanka and the loopy sons, but that will at most be periodic and won’t be the same as having to endure daily coverage of the latest maniacal moves of their father. I think his name will become so tainted that most people that may otherwise have done so will no longer check into his hotels, which will go bankrupt. The very name Trump will become synonymous with mendacity and failure, and his toxicity will be universal.

  122. @YesIKnowtheMuffinMan You're right. Sarah Sanders said that Trump announces official policy by tweets, so the media has to pay attention to those tweets and tell us about them. Once Trump is out of office, the media, and most of us, can pay as much attention to his tweets as we pay to, for example, Kim Kardashian tweets. Sure, Fox can put on a "He Wus Robbed" show, but the rest of us will only need to think of him as we set about repairing the damage he has done to the country.

  123. @YesIKnowtheMuffin We can only wish

  124. I suspect he will be taken out in a straight jacket, kicking and screaming. His businesses will tank, as he will lose those trying to curry favor. Melania will lay very low. Ivanka and Jared will try to salvage what they can of reputation and business. Junior will continue to make a fool of himself, but few will care. Eric will run what’s left of the brand. Good riddance!

  125. What makes you think he will willingly leave the White House when (if) he loses? I’m not happy to say this, but I can envision the possible necessity of a military coup to restore our democracy.

  126. @Mark I agree. Bannon told us right after the 2016 election that they were already looking into postponing or cancelling 2020. They were serious.

  127. @Mark There is very little I would like better than seeing Individual-1 dragged kicking and screaming from the White House on January 20, 2021.

  128. Deep down, Donald Trump would be OK with being a one term president. He doesn’t seem to like it, but he does enjoy whining about being ripped off somehow. What he could never accept is being a has-been. Which is why, once he leaves office, the most infuriating thing for you in the media could do to him, is ignore him. It’s not even bad press that he can’t live with, but no coverage at all.

  129. @NM He desperately needs to be a two-term president so that the statute of limitations kicks in on the many charges he'd be faced with if he's no longer in office in 2021.

  130. You have more power over your mind than you realise but you have to have the discipline and dare I say "centredness" to make it happen. For instance, there's the adage that if you say something like "don't think about a pink elephant" and you can't avoid thinking about it but with mindfullness you can stop thinking about everything else (or anything you wish). It's not hard at all but the desire to attain such a level of enlightenment needs to exist.

  131. He did say at rally yesterday-a third term would be a good idea--

  132. There's only one way this story ends well. Nancy Pelosi said it best and first, not with Trump impeached necessarily, but with Trump in prison. Ditto for his sons, daughter and son-in-law, all of whom have collaborated in his flagrant crimes. Trump's disgrace needs to be fully investigated, detailed publicly, and never pardoned––but punished with incarceration. He gets no Twitter feed in prison.

  133. @Solar Power Trump will never see a day in prison. That is just the way our society works if you have enough money and/or political clout.

  134. @Solar Power I agree with you 100%. If Trump gets impeached, Six-Pence might pardon him. We need to remove Trump at the polls.

  135. @Solar Power I think Trump will be sentenced to prison after the 2020 election that he will lose. In a way, that possibility has enhanced his erratic behavior. No Twitter in jail. Hence, we might see something extremely odd, like an ex-president living in exile.

  136. trump will be impeached. The Cabinet will invoke the 25th Amendment. trump will lose the election. Twitter will bar him. He goes far, far away, but probably not Turnberry, Scotland.

  137. Just wait till this presidency is in syndication.

  138. Once he is no longer "President", he will be prosecuted and convicted for his many crimes. Yes, he may continue to seek attention from prison, tweeting till his thumbs fall off, but I doubt his demented messages will command the attention he currently gets from his inane, insulting and ignorant communications.

  139. Remember Sarah Palin, yeah me neither. Sure she's around (somewhere) but the bloom is off the Alaskan tundra. DJT will disappear from the daily conversation just like Palin, once he loses the attention of the presidency and be a quack just like he has always been.

  140. @Ms. Sofie Huh? She is actually in *this* very news cycle, as her husband just filed for divorce. Bad example.

  141. @Ms. Sofie Funny you should mention Sarah Palin. I was thinking about what a footnote it was yesterday when Todd Palin filed for divorce from her. After all that parading around she did of her family. But the bad news is that she is off the scene largely because has been overshadowed by someone even more obnoxious than she is - Donald Trump. So does that mean, gulp, that if Trump is out of our thoughts, he will have been eclipsed by an even worse spectacle? Yikes!

  142. @Ms. Sofie Ms. Paling got into the news today when a certain NY media outlet reported that she and Todd were divorcing.

  143. Here's something you and your employer can do, Frank. Once Trump is out of the Presidency (hopefully in 2020 and not later), stop giving any coverage to him. Make it Zero. Zilch. Nada. He should get no mention whatsoever in any major news outlets, no invitation to late night talk shows, no coverage of when he 'writes' his memoir, absolutely nothing. Deny him any active media presence. And here's something we all can do. Stop following him on Twitter. Make his Twitter following sink faster than a rock in the ocean. This is not so that the nation enters a collective state of denial, forgetting the madness that has been this Presidency. Rather it is to suck the oxygen out of Trump's virtual presence. Trump thrives on popularity, whether positive or negative. Deny him that. Think of how much time has collectively been spent by the nation discussing this President and his shenanigans. Its time for us to get that time back to talk about all the other things we didn't because we were so sucked up in a Trumpian vortex.

  144. I don’t care. Do you?

  145. What is all this fretting about? Once Trump is out of office he will be in a new one, called a cell block.

  146. No, we will never, ever be rid of the Republican President and his Complicit Crowd - but it will also take a long long long time to get back the respect and trust required for America to lead again, internationally. What was unleashed by the GOPer gatekeepers who ever let Very Stable Genius even close to a ballot without producing his tax returns, will take at least a generation to stuff back into Pandora's Box, if then. The Trumpkin termites are every day gnawing out the foundations of our democratic institutions, making mocking end runs around our checks and balances. From here on in it will only get worse, as the time for checks and balances to be effective gets ever more compressed leading up to November 2020; bet the lame duck period will be like nothing this country has seen before, ever.

  147. These two have all of Dad’s gall but only a scintilla of his guile. Perfect!

  148. But he can be ignored because he has no power. The problem is, can the media ignore him? If he's ignored he will fade away, a useless piece of our past. But hopefully he'll be in prison.

  149. Frank, take heart. Melania will ditch the old geezer the moment he loses the presidency. We’ll get to see the mad courtship of Donald as he hunts for wife number four. In fact, that could be the premise of his new reality show. Then there will be all the law suits, the indictments, the bankruptcies etc. All the GOP lackeys and bootlickers that have spent six years cowering in his shadow will suddenly start trash talking him. He will realize that Fox and Friends didn’t really love him after all. Good willing, his ultimate fate will be hobbling around a prison yard. Suffice it to say, it will be a most exceptional post presidency.

  150. From a big FB fan: Good piece but how about a better final sentence. Fictive? Ineluctable? Please.

  151. @Sem Maybe Mo seized the copy before it went to print!

  152. The press will stop covering ex-presidemt Trump if, and only if, the airwaves and presses will be more profitiable directed towards pressing and marketing strawberry jam. If that highly unlikely scenario unfolds, Trump memorabilia goes to the trash and we enjoy the glory of fresh strawberry jam, of course offered at a competitive price. More likely, we suffer a continuing barrage of messages for incontinence pads, million-dollar drugs for the very few of us, cars designed for the shows' target market, and Trump forever.

  153. I don't know what I wanted more in the early evening of November 8, 2016, Hillary to fortify Obama's legacy with a third term, or to simply and at long last be rid of Trump on the daily news cycle. Because of the result of that fateful day's election returns, I haven't watched the news a single second since, including my beloved NPR on my daily commute. I do believe once he's run out of Washington he'll simply morph back into the guy that might be easily heard, but much more easily dismissed.

  154. Mr. Bruni is assuming a lot here. For starters, that if Trump loses, he'll leave office. Or, as we get closer to November 2020, that he'll actually permit an election. This is when we would do well to recall all the kowtowing this Supreme Court has done toward him. They handed him his Muslim ban, even though he provided literally no evidence that terrorists were coming from the countries listed. They gave him the nod to spend our hard-earned tax dollars for his "national emergency" - an emergency existing only in his mind. His counsel provided absolutely no evidence to the court of any emergency justifying the waste of billions of our tax dollars, and yet they appeased him. Fast forward to November 2020. As Trump begins to see his reign of power slipping away - and that he will be met with any number of state criminal charges that cannot be pardoned - he will once again concoct a "national emergency" and declare martial law. This will include the suspension of many of our rights, including our voting rights. And it is then that we will see how "independent" our judiciary is. If you think this will not happen here, let me remind you that just this past week, Trump's toady Ross threatened a NOAA employee because, of all things, the employee told the truth. Folks, we're looking at our democracy in the rear view mirror. Maybe, just maybe, we will have an election next year. And if Trump loses, maybe he'll leave. But don't bet the rent on either.

  155. @Donegal Don't count out the Supreme Court as a friend of the Republic just yet, my friend. There is Chief Justice Roberts. It's getting very clear as to where he would come down in this situation.

  156. @Donegal No, you're right. If he loses he won't leave. If he's forced out, say, by US Marshals, he'll call upon his faithful 39% to overthrow the new POTUS by force. Or, as you say, there may not be an election at all. He's broken the country.

  157. @Donegal The military protects our democracy & supports the rule of law. Military Police will remove Trump from the White House if he loses the election and refuses to leave. If he tries this, they'll treat him like the clown he is.

  158. If he legitimately loses in 2020 let the WH police show him the door and his greatest punishment and humiliation (if that is possible) that his name is never again seen or heard in any media at all for the rest of his life.

  159. "No, he’ll be tweeting, bleating, ranting and raging in precisely the manner that he is now, just without the nuclear codes." This is has become the biggest reason I want to see this man lose and the promptly get sent up the river. I need a break from his awful mouth and just the daily sight of him. Yes, he should answer for his role in the Stormy Daniels/Karen McDougal nonsense and his obstruction of justice and whatever else he's done. But, God almighty, I just want some peace and quiet for a while. So, please DOJ/NYAG/DANY, do us all a favor a muzzle this hideous blowhard because media will never suffocate him by ignoring him.

  160. Donald Trump is 73 years old, and does not lead a healthy lifestyle. His real estate empire is struggling, especially the golf courses, and will be doing a lot worse if we do have a recession in the next year. And if Trump loses the 2020 election, he will be subject to a wide variety of charges, from tax fraud to obstruction of justice, in New York State and federal courts. We may not be hearing all that much from Trump come 2021. As for his dynasty, we'll see in due time.

  161. I am not concerned about Trump post his presidency. Yes, he may, as you suggest, rant and rave. But, he will, for all time, be viewed as an anomaly, an aberration and someone who will never be taken seriously by a majority of Americans. When he is soundly defeated next year, Americans will breathe a huge sigh of relief and move forward once again endorsing values and principles and ethics that represent the true essence of what it means to be an American.

  162. @treabeton. I don't believe that Trump's 40% will suddenly embrace tolerance and democratic values. We'll have a hole in our society for a long time.

  163. @Barry Short But, it will be a small hole that we can overcome.

  164. President Trump’s ability to tweet and his access to the media may be impeded if justice is served and he goes to prison. Time will tell.

  165. One thing we know for sure: he’ll have an extraordinary amount of sensitive information for sale to the highest bidder, and he’ll answer the phone when Vladimir calls.

  166. @Josh Wilson: No worries, he won't remember 98% of the sensitive information fed to him (who really needs to read the President's Daily Briefs anyway, when you can spend time watching Fox and Friends instead?). He won't sufficiently understand the other 2% for his information to be genuinely useful to an enemy of the U.S.

  167. @Josh Wilson No--he won't. He refuses to read briefing documents, and refuses to be briefed by Intelligence personnel, or any members of his (very corrupt) Cabinet. He doesn't remember from one day to the next what HE said/did, let alone what anyone else told him.

  168. @Josh Wilson Only if he can remember it. Of course, what's to stop him from stealing classified documents before he leaves the WH.

  169. In prison or out, Trump will be a sideshow. Without power and influence, people will have no more need to pay attention and bow to him, and most will be more than happy to be rid of him. I think most people are sick to death of his ugliness and the never-ending chaos. Even his cult followers are getting bored with his same ol' lines - note the light attendance at his recent rallies

  170. @Lily, that can't be true. Why, just yesterday Trump noted that all of his rallies are completely sold out, with people waiting outside the stadium hoping to get in. Heh. He actually believes this.

  171. @Lily I'm afraid I have to respectfully disagree. There is a segment of our population that adores and fawns over certain "celebrity" and that segment is way too large for my comfort. They will eat up every word he says for his eternity.

  172. @Lily "Even his cult followers are getting bored with his same ol' lines - note the light attendance at his recent rallies" Fake News! They are the largest, most beautiful, most awesome crowds that there has ever been... Much bigger than Sleepy Joes.....

  173. A complete and thorough reconstruction of our ethics laws and extensive campaign finance reform will be required to fumigate our government after these rats have gone.

  174. He'll soon be a forgotten stain on USA history, joining the unmentionables ones such as Franco, Pinochet, and Joe McCarthy.

  175. If Trump looses in 2020 it will be tough for him to tweet his way to further relevance, even less likely in establishing an ego soothing TV empire from a Sing-sing cell. He will have the JD and the NY AG breathing down his neck, countless lawsuits to fight, attacks from sexual assault victims, etc. All plaintiffs will come out of the woodworks to seek their revenge. I can't wait for the judgement day! The Trump name will go down in ignominy.

  176. Conservatives said the same of Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama. Liberals the same of Nixon. These op-Ed pages get FAR too twisted into political knots.

  177. @Once From Rome But absolutely no one in either party has ever, ever been as horrible as trump, who is the bottom of the bottom.

  178. I dare say you may be wrong, Mr. Bruni. His future irrelevance will result in what he fears the most - indifference. There is no coming back from that.

  179. I cant help but laugh out loud these days (because laughing IS better than crying) about this ridiculous joke we have leading the country. "Ivanka and Don Jr jockeying to be their dad's political heir" I mean this just cant be reality...but it is. And the worst thing, the most outrageous, damaging and frightening thing is the people in this country who support Trump and his band of merry grifters. It's the people who dont see that Trump and this administration are absolute ENEMIES of this country - enemies of what is good, and sacred and fair and reasonable. These people don't even realize what jokes they themselves have become. Maybe it's time for Trump and all his supporters to put on the big red noses & curly wigs and dance around like the clowns they truly are - they can dance on the grave of decency, intelligence and democracy of the United States which they have killed and continue to beat down, even after death. This has nothing to do with politics (and never has had anything to do with politics) it is simply about a self involved evil bigot who never should have had the opportunity to wreck this country, yet was given the chance to do just that while touting it as what's best for us - that's the part that really stings.

  180. His social media accounts will be cut off for spewing hate once he is out of office. Fox News and others will turn on him and blame him for the downfall of the GOP. His corruption will eventually send him and his family to jail. Gone, but the stain on the country will always be present.

  181. His social media accounts will be cut off for spewing hate once he is out of office. Fox News and others will turn on him and blame him for the downfall of the GOP. His corruption will eventually send him and his family to jail. Gone, but the stain on the country will always be present.

  182. I disagree, and here is why: After Donald Trump leaves office, and I hope this will be in 2021, there will be NO need for the press to continue to cover his every single tweet and rambling utterance. None. If the press can't figure that out, well, I'll cancel my subscription to the New York Times. And I have the really good subscription that includes the recipes, the crossword puzzle, and the spelling bee. Just saying. I pay for content, and I will ignore content about Donald Trump, failed former president-ish individual.

  183. Mr. Bruni, While walking on a street in the E. 70s of Manhattan, I pointed to a small carriage-house with a Louisiana motif, paused and said to President Trump, 'This was once rubble'. What a curious dream, I thought, on awakening, and why would I dream about this unprecedented president. Brainwashed and saturated most likely by an overexposure to one individual, who is in reality quite ordinary. Never in history, in such a short amount of time, has there been frenzy, nearing obsession about a character who is either loved, or despised depending on how he makes one feel. Even if he were an extraordinary and gifted ballet dancer on the side, the time to tune out would have happened long ago, before moving on to the order of the day. Unfortunately there appears to be no order to follow, and here you are stuck in trying to separate America from Trump. He has no 'presence' for this voter and yet he surfaces in a dream on a quiet lingering afternoon in autumn. Here is an 'opinion', which you did not ask for, but I give crummy advice: Take a vacation with Regan, far from the maddening crowd, and try not to worry about what is happening while on leave. In a few days, you will sense that the world is not all about Trump, and go in search of beauty and some enlightened laughter. Some of us may follow in your footsteps.

  184. George Gershwin, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Andrew Wyeth, Cole Porter, Judy Garland and other great performers and artists will be remembered, played, and watched long after Trump is dead and is a footnote in some history books.

  185. @Diogenes Books?

  186. Post Presidency Trump (PPT) will be most problematic for the Republican party. Whenever Dems do come to power, Trump will use Twitter to keep the GOP where he is for as long as he is on the earth. The new heir to GOP leadership will be trailed by PPT and his opinions and followers everyday. It will not be easy for him/her. The reality is that PPT will make sure the GOP - as a party of self proclaimed fiscal conservatives and free markets - is no more. And can never be again. (As if it really ever was).

  187. @EC Interesting prognostication, but that's not how America works. If Trump is denied a second term, he will be labeled a loser, like Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush. Who remembers those guys? Americans have no love or regard for losers. If Trump leaves after a second term, he will just become another right-wing blowhard in the land of Fox News and ubiquitous Hate Radio, while life goes on under a new president. Americans do not remain loyal to people who have no power to do anything. No ex-president has such a following, not even Bill Clinton. Trump can try to cause mischief in political exile all he wants, the mainstream media won't pay attention to him anymore. They can't do that now, because it would only work if they all stopped covering him, and that won't happen for reasons of competitive advantage. Americans love to gawk at train and car wrecks, disasters and conflict. Viewers and readers would just flock to the media outlets who keep a spotlight on the spectacle. PTT will actually be more problematic for the Democratic Party. If Dems are unable to send him packing in 2020, they will turn on each other, as they always do. The Nominee faction will blame the Also Ran faction, and vice versa. Then they will pick up their marbles, go home and stop paying attention until the next presidential election, instead of getting busy with what they need to do: realize that politics is not a part-time avocation, and get busy winning state houses and governorships.

  188. @Migrateurrice You are misreading the times. Trump has a MOVEMENT. Carter and Bush did not. They didn't have Twitter or a massive base that wants what it wants and will follow their leader even if he has to break the law to get them what they want. TO quote you - "Trump can try to cause mischief in political exile all he wants, the mainstream media won't pay attention to him anymore." A - When did Trump Tweet Junkies ever really need mainstream media? They despise MSM. They buy that it is fake. That is part of their thing. Dems I will give you this. IF The Dems do not beat Trump in 2020, there will e bloodletting. Why didn't they impeach? But ultimately I stand by my original post. Trump has entranced the GOP voters. He is their leader. They have a MOVEMENT. They will follow him even if he goes to prison. The moment he is out of prison he will get them all back. They are not interested in the law.

  189. I just hope he leaves peacefully. Everything else is endurable. The great American tradition of the peaceful transfer of power is at risk here. It keeps me up at night.

  190. He won’t leave peacefully.

  191. He is quite old. The tweets will end when he passes away. We will stop hearing about them once he is out of office.

  192. @John His parents both lived long lives. He may be around for a while, like it or not.

  193. For those of us who remember World War Two, we know that our country was in far more danger with much bigger problems then we have today with Trump. We should keep things in proper perspective.

  194. Except that it isn’t WWII and the American people don’t have a common enemy. We are at war with each other and Trump, along with the virulent voices on right-wing media, is fanning the flames. Let’s hope our current situation ends better than WWII did for all of our sakes.

  195. @Aaron sadly this threat is from within. And, speaking of perspective...how do you think Berliners felt in 1936?

  196. Ten years from now, when the full extent of the damage Trump is doing to this country has finally begun to manifest itself and it is no longer possible to discern any important differences at all between this country and countries like Russia, China, Egypt, Hungary, Poland and Turkey, even his supporters will be appalled, but by then it will be too late for them and the rest of us to recover. And, of course, even if he loses in 2020, there is no reason to believe he will ever willingly leave the White House.

  197. @A. Stanton I think it's quite clear that there's nothing he can do to appall or repel his extremely devoted and uniquely unwavering base. There's a growing body of research, analyses, and studies by psychologists and neuroscientists to support this.

  198. Media attention is Trump's drug of choice, and after mainlining it at POTUS-level quantities, he is certainly not going to quietly go away. Part of his slavish devotion to his base is to maintain a large population of people who will continue to believe his words and do his bidding after he's out of office. He will want to test their willingness to act on his directions and he will aim to remain a force in our society that is ignored at his personal enemies' peril.

  199. This is among the more depressing pieces I’ve read in a while. The idea that this nightmare doesn’t end if and when he is defeated is just plain demoralizing.

  200. How much can he tweet from jail?

  201. @QNC Demoralizing is the point.

  202. @QNC I second that emotion!

  203. I've been saying it since they day he announced his first campaign: the media could destroy Trump from within if they would simply IGNORE his tweets. Given his personality, he would go out of his mind. But they can't. They're co-dependent with the President. He's their meal ticket, and they both know it.

  204. @Csmith He is the President of the United States, so unfortunately his tweets, like his statements, are newsworthy. Once he's out of office, the situation will be different and they can ignore him.

  205. Sorry, Mr. Bruni but I beg to differ. Donald Trump will fade into history like the nightmare he has become, and barely manage to be more than a historical footnote in a cautionary tale. And I refuse to hang onto him or the memory of him a moment longer than necessary regardless of the outcome of the next Democratic debate or the 2020 election. No matter what, I will shut him up and shut him out of existence. And that can't happen soon enough.

  206. @N. Smith: Oh, he'll be more than a historical footnote. He will go down as the worst president ever in United States history. Much analysis will be done about how his election happened. And we will as citizens and residents have to put pressure on government to restore protections for the environment, science, clean air and water, national parks, safety, health (particularly women's health), civil rights, immigrants' rights, the rule of law, free speech, and so on. Moreover, international respect for the U.S.—not to mention international agreements in which the U.S. was formerly a party to—has been destroyed, which will take quite some time to rebuild. Trump's memory will not fade quickly. Rather . . . our collective memories of Trump will not fade quickly.

  207. @L Just for the record. Going down as the worst president ever in the United States is a historical footnote -- and I have every intention of leaving him in the past.

  208. I hadn’t given much thought to the post-Trump era, given the stress of the day-to-day, and the objective to remove the orange one from the WH. So thanks, Frank Bruni for this depressing reality check.

  209. I live in Trump country. I've never heard a single person mention Junior except in passing. Same with Eric. With Ivanka and Melania, it's all about their looks. (Melania wins.) None of these people are more than superficially interesting, much less exciting, except as attachments to Donald. And I think he likes it that way. This isn't a guy who would rush into a burning building to save his family. Donald Trump would trample their bodies to be the first one out. In his world, there is only one who matters.

  210. @KJ - That and the fact that none of them (his children) seem to be much more than dim bulbs wrapped in expensive packaging.

  211. Suppose Trump loses. What will he do? The possibilities include his refusal to leave the White House voluntarily. Imagine that spectacle - and, of course, the republic party won't do a thing about it. Or, perhaps more likely, he leaves and takes (former) Air Force One to Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee or Kentucky where he'll hold a rally for his 2024 campaign at the same time as the inauguration of the 46th president. Once again, the republic party will do nothing to stop it. And if he does lose, there will be a fascinating battle in 2024: Trump v Pence. What will the republic party do about that?

  212. Whenever Trump is out of office (and that time can't come soon enough), every hiccup he makes and every tweet he sends won't be covered by the media. He and his children can run around the country speaking to his "base" at rallies, but donations will dry up when he has no power to grant favors. Even Fox News will lose interest because his ramblings have become word salad. The evangelicals will have no use for him once he has nothing further to offer re: the overturn of Roe vs. Wade. He'll be wandering around his golf courses babbling to his Secret Service detail. I suspect it won't take Melania long to file for divorce. Sadly, Trump leaving the scene won't solve our problems, but at least the ugliness and corruption that was there all along is out in the open now. We're going to be cleaning out the Augean stables for a long, long time.

  213. To the extent that the Kardashians and their extended families have long since acquired A-list notoriety and appear well able to sustain it, how could the same not be true of the Trumps who acquired notoriety well before DJ became PT? How when, in addition, PT as president - were his presidency to somehow end today - would have to be credited with fashioning a new notoriety, orders of magnitude beyond what preceded it. The best that can be hoped for is that the Trumps would come to be regarded as among the worst examples of human behavior, not unlike Satan and the Fallen Angels, all of whose "works and pomps" are to be renounced. The odds of the best coming to pass? An oh-so-long shot given, for example, today's FiveThirtyEight.com survey of all polls continuing to show PT's approval rating at more than 40%.

  214. Mr.Bruni, clearly Trump has rattled you as he has most of us.I,however,can imagine a post-Trump world.You do remember Sarah Palin and her instant and incessant celebrity.People flocked to see her, her wardrobe was analyzed,her family was front row center-she could draw a crowd and she had book and TV deals.She was the flavor de jour of the conservative crowd.Her star power dimmed and the news of her divorce was barely reported this week.The celebrity fans are feckless and fickle-they will find another controversial leader.The rest of us will be left to repair the damage Trump has done to our Democracy.

  215. I agree that "We Will Never, Ever Be Rid of Donald Trump." In the words of Kurt Vonnegut: "Things are going to get unimaginably worse and they are never ever going to get better again."

  216. Agree to all especially about the no coverage ever again. Either that or bury it in the middle of the paper. That said, let us not take our eye off the ball quite yet. There is still more than a year until elections. Should he lose, there is then the lame duck period of time in which to inflict trauma, drama, and pain on us all. NYT, stay diligent, citizens of America stay watchful. We are not out of the woods yet.

  217. There is a way to silence Trump, and that is to LOCK HIM UP on his leaving office, in whatever manner his departure may be.

  218. "I come to say to you this afternoon, however difficult the moment, however frustrating the hour, it will not be long, because 'truth crushed to earth will rise again.' How long? Not long, because 'no lie can live forever.' How long? Not long, because 'you shall reap what you sow.' "How long? Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." I pray you are right, Dr. King; I pray you are right.

  219. Trump can't live without being the center of attention, I give him six months out of office and he will appropriate Jackie Mason's one man show and do his own version of The World According to Me on Broadway. My prediction is that his fans will show up in serious numbers for a while to pay homage to Il Duce, but once the attention wanes he shifts his attention to full time tweeting, call ins to Fox programs, and complaining about how Page Six of the Post understates his wealth and accomplishments.

  220. Magnificent: "all of Dad’s gall but only a scintilla of his guile" Think you're mistaken about what becomes of DJT, though. He'll always be a big man--in his mind--but no one will have to take him seriously like we must now.

  221. Yes, he'll try to be prominent on our collective consciousness. But, who is going to enable him to do so? If Fox gives him as much exposure as likely they will, does CNN try to match the exposure? And at the Times, will Trump get a paragraph or two occasionally or page one spreads ? Will the Post diminish its heavy, heavy coverage of him, coverage which has led to circulation zooming up? And all the other media, can they resist him at a time when staying in business is, for many of them, uncertain? Can any media company afford to ignore him? The obvious answer is why Trump will be around for a long time.

  222. Among the first applications for AI was to maximize advertising revenue by using algorithms that elevate unworthy clickbait to the top of our digital media hierarchy. A hurricane, a mass shooting, earthquake or other calamity is guaranteed to swamp our airwaves because it pays. The Trumpian innovation was the recognition that natures wrath has no monopoly on chaotic devastation. If a politician can hijack each news cycle he can reliably translate that free press in to two things. Money and votes. It's the alchemy of our time.

  223. Did we really think we'd skate through this Democracy without challenges? If we are determined enough and energetic enough we can turn him out, but the threat he represents won't have been vanquished. I for one will be grateful that he'll be out there making noise. Maybe we won't go back to sleep again.