Donald Trump is not an overly bookish kind of guy, but he keeps getting slammed by ambitious authors, ranging from Michael Wolff to Bob Woodward. The latest entrant in this crowded field is Full Disclosure by Stormy Daniels, a ribald tell-all of her frolics with Trump. In it, she lodges the accusation that she enjoyed the ‘least impressive sex I ever had’ with him. Daniels’s book suggests, among other things, that Sen. Marco Rubio was onto something when he mocked Trump for his small hands. Daniels corroborates Rubio’s suspicions with what the New York Post calls a below-the belt blow. She reports that her field investigations led her to some stark conclusions: they revealed that his no-longer private parts, at least to her, were ‘smaller than average,’ though she allows that they were ‘not freakishly small.’
This concession allows a lot of latitude for interpretation, but it seems clear that to Trump size really does matter for reasons that he might prefer not to dilate upon. As Daniels puts it, ‘he knows he has an unusual penis. It has a huge mushroom head. Like a toadstool…’ It’s an evocative metaphor. There can be no doubting that as president, Trump’s problems are, well, mushrooming.
Sen. Mitch McConnell is scrambling to rescue the Supreme Court nomination of Brett Kavanaugh who stands accused of seeking to rape a young woman during his high school days. A public hearing will take place on Monday before the Senate, but Trump himself is remaining unwontedly quiet about the accusations. He’s leaving it to his aides such as Director of Strategic Communications Mercedes Schlapp, who called Kavanaugh ‘incredibly professional,’ to raise doubts about why the Democrats took so long to air the allegation.
Another problem for Trump is that his own legal team does not have a grasp on the perils that may face him. The New York Times reports that his ‘lawyers have only a limited sense of what many witnesses — including senior administration officials and the president’s business associates — have told investigators and what the Justice Department plans to do with any incriminating information it has about Mr Trump, according to interviews with more than a dozen people close to the president.’ Now that he has secured the cooperation of Paul Manafort, Special Counsel Robert Mueller may drop another bombshell indictment this week against Roger Stone or Don Jr., thereby adding to the sense of chaos and embattlement in the White House.
Maybe Trump’s wackiest move, however, is to slap another $200 billion in trade tariffs on China. Trump is appealing to the patriotism of Americans to sacrifice on behalf of his grand tariff strategy. But a new report from the Associated Press indicates that he’s mostly babbling to himself. The Trump base only comprises a quarter of the electorate: ‘the majority of the electorate, including a sizable percentage of Republican-leaning voters, doesn’t feel good about the president, according to a presentation from pollster Neil Newhouse that spanned dozens of pages.’ In imposing tariffs, Trump is unlikely to boost his ratings. Quite the contrary. He is doing the equivalent of stepping on a landmine to cure a headache. China has retaliated by imposing tariffs on another $60 billion on American goods and Trump’s tariffs simply amount to a tax hike on Americans right before the November elections. The idea that his pet project will bring ‘Billions of Dollars, and Jobs, flowing into our Country,’ as he put it in a tweet a day ago, is sheer rodomontade. But as the Stormy Daniels account indicates, Trump has long lived in his own personal fantasy island, where he can behave as he pleases. Only now is reality starting to intrude as he cannot get the country to come together.