Bob Franken




This time it’s not Donald Trump or one of his peeps lying. This time the lying is being done by liars talking about Trump. Of course, in the world of politicsbiz, nobody says what he or she means — never has. A case in point: Many of the Republican lesser stars are not responding to superstar Trump, who is making sure he has a face-saving device when facing the reality that Joe Biden actually beat him and will take over on Jan. 20.
But President Trump is using his waning days to throw a bunch of White House parties, disregarding the fact that he’ll risk the lives of anybody foolish enough to attend. It turns out that his real purpose is to superspread the word that he’ll be back, telling the doomed assembly:
“It’s been an amazing four years. We’re trying to do another four years. Otherwise, I’ll see you in four years.”
He made sure that he arranged to get it on video, in case there were few party survivors.
For the huge field of ambitious GOP members who have their own designs on the White House, that serves as notice — as if they needed the notice — that they need to pretend they welcome him to their field. That would include Sen. Rick Scott, who is among those in the “mentions” category, meaning they have arranged to be mentioned each time the prospects in 2024 are talked about:
“It’d be great if he ran,” said Scott dutifully. “He’s done a good job. I think he ought to run if he wants to run. Who knows what’s going to happen in ’24?”
Who knows, indeed. There are so many uncertainties ahead for Donald Trump, both legally and financially, that to be anything but blasé about whether he’d get in the way of the others wouldn’t be worth the effort.

Meanwhile,, back at the White House ranch … POTUS continues trying to, uh, Trump up charges to appeal to his paranoid base that Joe Biden stole the election from him. Actually, he alleges that every enemy he had did, in and out of the “deep state.” His legal tactics didn’t work. And how could they? They were coordinated by Rudy Giuliani. So Trump and Giuliani were trotting out their other familiar accusations, which is to say conspiracy theories. Some of them are quite bizarre; all of them presented without a shred of evidence.
For the millions-strong aforementioned paranoid base, there is no nefarious plot too bizarre, and Donald Trump plans to ride the rigged election horse for the next four years. But as the man said, “Who knows what’s going to happen in ’24?”
Meanwhile, the Democrats are proving again that artifice is a bipartisan game. They also dissemble as Joe Biden assembles an administration. Unlike the Republicans, who couldn’t care less whether their leadership is a bunch of old white guys, the Democrats need to make sure they keep all their factions happy, not only the demographic ones, but progressives and moderates. As they pick and choose leaders, their big deception is that he/she/Black/Hispanic/white/Asian/subcontinent/Christian/Muslim/Jew/hetero/LGBT/leftist/centrist is the most “qualified” for the job.
Senate confirmation will depend in large part on the party in charge. Both Republicans are facing Democrats in the Georgia runoffs. If both the Dems win, then their party takes over the Senate. If one or both GOPs prevail, they maintain their majority, and Biden will be forced to deal with Mitch McConnell. If the D’s take over, Biden will drop McConnell like a stone.
To a large degree, Georgia will be a testing ground for Donald Trump. Will the voters there stay home because he told them elections are frauds, or will they turn out in droves to win one for their fellow Bubba? The next campaign for Trumpism starts, in his mind, even before the last one is over.

© 2020 Bob Franken
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

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