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Donald Trump hates being the butt of ridicule

One slight in his direction and he frets about the moral fabric of America being torn apart

December 4, 2019

4:35 PM

4 December 2019

4:35 PM

Donald Trump, never one to miss a slight, canceled a scheduled Nato press conference on Wednesday, going into a snit about a video showing various panjandrums, including Justin Trudeau, yukking it up over his antics at the summit, including his impromptu and lengthy press conferences.

Trump employed the term ‘two-faced’ and he was emphatically not referring to the DC Comics character who first battled Batman in 1942. Instead, Trump, as is his wont, sought to depict himself as a victim of the condescension of both European elites and Congress.

For now, the real target of his ire appears to be the congressional lawmakers who keep stealing the headlines from him. The hearings today of the House Judiciary Committee featured three law professors sticking it to Trump and one defending him. Jonathan Turley called the case against Trump ‘slipshod’ but didn’t really gain much traction. You’re not likely to get far when your most memorable observation is that even your goldendoodle Luna is exercised about the inquisition against Trump. Still, Turley, an indefatigable publicity hound who has never met a cable news show he wasn’t ready to appear on, was in his element testifying.

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Another figure who has profited from the crusade against Trump, Norm Eisen, the steely lawyer for the Democrats, kept the hearing moving briskly, but it was the dorky law professor Pamela Karlan who stole the show, staring down Rep. Doug Collins as she accused him of insulting her by suggesting she couldn’t have read the hearing transcripts in toto. She said she had. What’s more, Karlan got off some snappy one-liners: ‘While the president can name his son Barron, he can’t make him a baron,’ she observed. Karlan is sure to become an MSNBC regular after her bravura performance.

The White House was not amused. Trump is a maestro of disparagement but recoils when anyone directs it at him. Most of all he doesn’t like being the butt of ridicule. Suddenly it’s all injured innocence and fretting about the moral fabric of America being torn apart. And so press secretary Stephanie Grisham tweeted, ‘Classless move by a Democratic “witness”. Prof Karlan uses a teenage boy who has nothing to do with this joke of a hearing (and deserves privacy) as a punchline. And what’s worse, it’s met by laughter in the hearing room. What is being done to this country is no laughing matter.’

Maybe it is. Even as the hearings took place, it turned out that Trump’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, continues to muck about in the fetid waters of Eastern Europe and Ukraine to try and besmirch the reputation of former Vice President Joe Biden. In a vivid display of his tenacity, or, if you prefer, obtuseness, Giuliani, so the New York Times reports remains undaunted by the revelations that have been emerging from Congress about Trump’s Ukraine follies. He apparently met on Tuesday in Budapest with a former Ukrainian prosecutor named Yuriy Lutsenko and traveled to Kiev the next day to meet with other quondam prosecutors, including Viktor Shokin and Kostiantyn H. Kulyk. According to the Times, Giuliani is eager to unearth more information to assist the production for One America News of a television documentary, if that is the appropriate word, that will lay to rest the ‘impeachment hoax’.

But who’s hoaxing whom? It’s Giuliani who’s making Don Quixote look like a model of sanity by comparison as he has another go at piercing, or concocting, a Ukraine conspiracy to try and disguise the real one.

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