Trump doesn’t even know what he himself has said
After Hillary Clinton’s speech eviscerating Trump’s capability to be president as revealed by things he’s said and positions he’s taken, Trump responded with a Tweet: “In Crooked Hillary’s telepromter [sic] speech yesterday, she made up things I said or believe but have no basis in fact. No honest!”
The Clinton campaign immediately responded:
Hillary Clinton just delivered a major national security address in which, among other things, she took aim at a wide-ranging catalogue of dangerous comments that Donald Trump has made. Some of the comments she referenced are so ignorant, incoherent or outrageous, it could be hard to believe they actually came out of the mouth of the GOP’s presidential nominee.
But they literally did. All of them. See for yourself — check out the lines from Clinton’s speech, and the Trump quotes behind them:
This is a man who said that more countries should have nuclear weapons, including Saudi Arabia.
ANDERSON COOPER: Saudi Arabia, nuclear weapons?
TRUMP: Saudi Arabia, absolutely.
This is someone who has threatened to abandon our allies in NATO – the countries that work with us to root out terrorists abroad before they strike us at home.
TRUMP: “We don’t really need NATO in its current form. NATO is obsolete… if we have to walk, we walk.”
He believes we can treat the U.S. economy like one of his casinos and default on our debts to the rest of the world, which would cause an economic catastrophe far worse than anything we experienced in 2008.
TRUMP: “I’ve borrowed knowing that you can pay back with discounts… I would borrow knowing that if the economy crashed, you could make a deal.”
He has said that he would order our military to carry out torture…
TRUMP: “Don’t tell me it doesn’t work — torture works… Waterboarding is fine, but it’s not nearly tough enough, ok?”
and the murder of civilians who are related to suspected terrorists…
TRUMP: “The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families”
even though those are war crimes.
TRUMP: “They won’t refuse. They’re not going to refuse me, If I say do it, they’re going to do it.”
He says he doesn’t have to listen to our generals or ambassadors, because he has – quote – “a very good brain.”
TRUMP: “I’m speaking with myself, number one, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things…my primary consultant is myself”
He also said, “I know more about ISIS than the generals, believe me.”
TRUMP: “I know more about ISIS than the generals do. Believe me.”
You know what? I don’t believe him.
TRUMP: “We don’t even really know who the leader [of ISIS] is.”
He believes climate change is a hoax invented by the Chinese…
TRUMP: “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”
and has the gall to say prisoners of war like John McCain aren’t heroes.
TRUMP: “He’s not a war hero. He was a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured, ok? I hate to tell you.”
He praises dictators like Vladimir Putin…
TRUMP: “I will tell you, in terms of leadership, he’s getting an ‘A,’ and our president is not doing so well.”
and picks fights with our friends – including the British prime minister…
TRUMP: “It looks like we are not going to have a very good relationship. Who knows?”
the mayor of London…
TRUMP: “Let’s take an I.Q. test… I think they’re very rude statements and frankly, tell him, I will remember those statements.”
the German chancellor…
TRUMP: “What Merkel has done is incredible, it’s actually mind boggling. Everyone thought she was a really great leader and now she’s turned out to be this catastrophic leader. And she’ll be out if they don’t have a revolution.”
the president of Mexico…
TRUMP: “I don’t know about the Hitler comparison [President Nieto made]. I hadn’t heard that, but it’s a terrible comparison. I’m not happy about that certainly. I don’t want that comparison, but we have to be strong and we have to be vigilant”
and the Pope.
TRUMP: “I don’t think [the Pope] understands the danger of the open border that we have with Mexico. I think Mexico got him to [criticize the wall] it because they want to keep the border just the way it is. They’re making a fortune, and we’re losing.”
He says he has foreign policy experience because he ran the Miss Universe pageant in Russia. . . .
Continue reading. And do read the whole thing, while keeping in mind that the GOP actually now supports Trump for president: Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, Reince Priebus, John McCain, Marco Rubio—all the stalwarts of the GOP believe that Trump is actually fit to be president. The GOP simply has no core beliefs; it will do anything, say anything, take any position, simply to win. No principles whatsoever.
As James Fallows notes in a column worth reading:
From the party as a whole? Nothing. Crickets.
- To the best of my knowledge, not one Republican Senator has stepped up to say: “Secretary Clinton’s criticisms are unfair. Donald Trump is the man for the job.” Not Mitch McConnell or Marco Rubio or John McCain.
- Not any prominent Representatives. Not Paul Ryan or Kevin McCarthy or any of their committee chairmen.
- Not any governors (though we should check on Chris Christie).
- Not any former Republican Secretaries of State or Defense or Treasury, or former Republican nominees or presidents, or national security advisors or trade negotiators.
- Not Reince Priebus or anyone from the party establishment. No one.
- Nor has any party leader chimed in to support his attack on Gonzalo Curiel, the “Mexican” judge from Indiana. (Update The never-disappointing Alberto Gonzales, White House counsel and Attorney General for GW Bush, has now weighed in to support Trump on the “Mexican” issue. Read that, then please see Garrett Epps’s Trumpo delenda est absolute demolition of the “Mexican” dispute.)
Many Republicans have continued attacking Hillary Clinton. But as far as I’m aware, no prominent party official has stepped up to say: She’s wrong when she says that Donald Trump is completely unfit for the job he seeks. (The Sunday shows tomorrow are still ahead, but they will be three days late — an eternity in modern news-cycle time.)
And yet: almost all of these people are preparing to accept Trump as their nominee and have said they “support” him.
You could say it’s “clever” for the Republican establishment to go through the motions of supporting Trump, while making it 100% clear that they know he’s toxically unqualified. I don’t really understand why they think that’s wiser than saying: No, here I draw the line. Maybe later on they’ll explain. For now this note is just to record the state of affairs and of public knowledge, six-plus weeks before the convention.