Thursday, July 18, 2019


The president is feigning contrition, as The New York Times reports:
President Trump on Thursday disavowed the “send her back” chant that broke out at his re-election rally Wednesday night when he railed against a Somali-born congresswoman, as Republicans in Congress tried to distance themselves and their party from the ugly refrain.

Mr. Trump said he “was not happy” with the chant and claimed that he had tried to cut it off, a claim contradicted by video of the event. Asked why he did not stop the chant, Mr. Trump said, “I think I did — I started speaking very quickly.” ...

“I was not happy with it,” Mr. Trump said on Thursday at the White House. “I disagree with it.”
The president is lying:
In fact, as the crowd roared “send her back,” Mr. Trump looked around and seemed to bask in the enthusiastic refrain.
He didn't speak for at least ten seconds as the crowd chanted.

A shrewd liar would have said he couldn't understand what the crowd was chanting. But Trump thinks he doesn't have to be shrewd, because his base loves him more every time he's accused of lying (or rabble-rousing, or racism).

Mainstream pundits and terrified Democrats fear that Trump will get away with this sort of thing indefinitely. Only Republicans seem to recognize that he's doing himself and his party damage:
Mr. Trump’s effort to distance himself from his own campaign rally reflected the misgivings of his allies. Republicans on Thursday pleaded privately with the White House to avoid allowing the party to be tied to the message embraced by the crowd in Greenville, N.C., even as they declined to criticize Mr. Trump....

“Those chants have no place in our party or our country,” Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the Republican leader, told reporters.

Those were almost the exact words used by Representative Tom Emmer of Minnesota, the chairman of the House Republican campaign arm, used earlier Thursday, when he repudiated the chant....
Have top Republicans really made Trump fearful of a repeat of this chant? It's possible. But I can't imagine Trump giving up on Omar and her fellow non-white female progressives in the House.

Trump won't even have to say anything critical about about Omar at his next rally -- the minute he mentions her name, the crowd will begin to chant, "Send her back!" The only way he can prevent that is not to name her at all. We'll know he got a good talking-to if he refrains from mentioning her altogether.

I can't see that happening. I imagine he'll say Omar's name, the chant will start, and with a mock-concerned look on his face and a barely concealed grin he'll tell the crowd, "No, no, no, we're not allowed to say that. We have to be politically correct." Everyone in attendance will know that what he really means is My handlers have fed me some P.C. bullshit about this, so I have to ask you to stop, but we all know that terror-loving bitch deserves it.

Or maybe he'll say, "There's a certain person (dramatic pause) whose name I'm not supposed to mention..." -- and soon the crowd will get the reference and start the chant, as Trump mock-protests.

I can't believe he'll give it up altogether. If he does, we'll know just how scared the Republicans are.

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