Bob Franken

TRUMP VS. BIDEN

FROM KING FEATURES SYNDICATE
BY BOB FRANKEN

TRUMP VS. BIDEN

“DO YOU MISS ME YET?”
Those words came last week in a statement from former President Donald Trump, released on Twitter via a surrogate because Trump was thrown off the service in January. But there was no doubt it was his. The blowhard tweet was vintage Don Trump. And the reaction was scathing, in spite of the Biden Afghanistan debacle.
Let’s paraphrase, because this is a family publication: No, sleaze-bag. And we don’t miss his smarmy cast of characters, like Mike Lindell, the MyPillow guy, who has gone over the edge of the bed by predicting Trump’s “reinstatement” by the end of this month.
Not that Biden is having an easy time of it. In fact, the polls show that his approval rating has slipped beneath 50%, and that’s before recent political losses as U.S. forces withdraw from Afghanistan. They will come down more sure as shooting, or really, our allies not shooting and turning tail and running.

Part of the objection to the easy Taliban takeover of the Afghanistan government, besides their vicious treatment of women and the execution of anyone they perceive as an enemy, is that the country will once again become a staging area for terrorist attacks against the United States and our allies. That will need to be dealt with, but the Department of Homeland Security just put out one of its bulletins:
“These threats include those posed by domestic terrorists, individuals and groups engaged in grievance-based violence, and those inspired or motivated by foreign terrorists and other malign foreign influences.”
The warning went on to describe the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, upcoming Jewish holidays and one other interesting matter: domestic terrorism based on reactions to public health restrictions brought on by the pandemic, i.e., domestic extremists friendly to Trump.
“These extremists may seek to exploit the emergence of COVID-19 variants by viewing the potential re-establishment of public health restrictions across the United States as a rationale to conduct attacks. Pandemic-related stressors have contributed to increased societal strains and tensions, driving several plots by domestic violent extremists, and they may contribute to more violence this year.”
And let’s not forget about the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol building and the meting out of justice for that. There’s a big rally scheduled shortly after that anniversary in support of the insurrectionists.
In the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, Donald Trump continues to go around the country claiming that he really won the election and that Joe Biden and conspirators stole it from him. And yes, gullible millions of Americans continue to believe him, because Donald Trump can do no wrong.
That means Joe Biden can do no right, except slowly make the levers of government work, after Trump spent four years throwing sand in them. Biden is opposed by a close Republican minority in Congress, which is throwing up every obstacle to progress that it can. I mean really throwing up. The GOP has become the party of Trump and most members bow and scrape to the Don.
Biden’s schtick has been competence. But inevitably, along comes an Afghanistan marked by incompetence from this administration, and the mystique is broken. Gains that had been registered in pursuit of an ambitious domestic agenda are in jeopardy. Not only will adversary Republicans be emboldened, but dissatisfied progressives and sometimes centrists in his own party also will be. Maneuvering the entire mess will take remarkable finesse.
Let’s face it: Finesse was not Donald Trump’s strong suit. Neither was sensitivity or empathy, nor for that matter truth-telling. He was more of a demagoguery, racist, misogyny and corruption kinda guy.
So it will define the country if all things remain the same (which is impossible) and Donald Trump makes another go for it and Joe Biden seeks re-election. What a rat buckle that will be. That is if Trump is able to withstand all the legal criminal investigations and civil lawsuits and a repeat campaign actually takes place.
It will be a battle between those Trump asks, “DO YOU MISS ME YET” versus those who are totally repulsed by the very thought of him. Have we gotten over Trump, and will America come to her senses? That is doubtful.

© 2021 Bob Franken
Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.


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