This Is Not Normal, November 4, 2018 – November 10, 2018

This is your weekly reminder that this is NOT NORMAL.

  • It is NOT NORMAL that the Arizona Republican Party is suing for communications between the Arizona Democratic Party and George Soros, apparently based on nothing but a desire to dog-whistle at their base while the Arizona Senate election votes are counted.
  • It is NOT NORMAL for one of the president’s possible attorney general nominees said on national television that the president had chosen the acting attorney general specifically to end the special counsel’s investigation.
  • Speaking of the acting attorney general, it is NOT NORMAL that the president has chosen an acting attorney general someone who served on the board of a company which is under criminal investigation for fraud. (The acting attorney general does not appear to have personal liability, but this still seems like a conflict of interest to me.)
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the White House suspended the press credentials of a reporter who is known for aggressive questioning of the president, on the ostensible grounds that he “placed his hands” on an intern, nor that the White House press secretary later uploaded an altered video in an attempt to prove the spurious allegations.
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president publicly scolded three separate reporters–all of whom, coincidentally, happen to be women of color–for asking “stupid” questions or not knowing “what the hell she’s doing.”
  • It is NOT NORMAL that the president flew to France to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the Armistice that ended World War I and then didn’t go to the ceremony because of rain, even though all the other heads of state managed to be there. (I am unsympathetic to the argument that Marine One could not fly in the rain because previous White Houses had contingency plans for inclement weather and it’s difficult to understand why no contingency plan would have been in place for this event.)
  • The president’s Twitter feed continues to be NOT NORMAL. To be specific, this week it was NOT NORMAL for the president to
    • refer to a sitting Senator as a “Schumer Puppet”;
    • accuse CNN of “Fake Suppression Polls”;
    • seemingly attempt to intimidate voters with the threat that “Law Enforcement has been strongly notified to watch closely for any ILLEGAL VOTING which may take place in Tuesday’s Election (or Early Voting). Anyone caught will be subject to the Maximum Criminal Penalties allowed by law”;
    • claim, after his party lost dozens of seat in the House of Representatives and several governorships and statehouses, that he had “Received so many Congratulations from so many on our Big Victory last night, including from foreign nations (friends) that were waiting me out, and hoping on Trade Deals” (I am very skeptical that these calls happened);
    • tweet that “You mean they are just now finding votes in Florida and Georgia — but the Election was on Tuesday? Let’s blame the Russians and demand an immediate apology from President Putin!”;
    • claim that he was sending lawyers to Florida to expose election fraud;
    • complain about an outgoing Senator’s proposal to protect the special counsel from being fired by the new acting attorney general;
    • complain that the legally mandated vote recounts in Florida are “an embarrassment to our Country and to Democracy!”;
    • accuse Arizona officials (who are members of his party) of accepting fraudulent votes;
    • call the president of France “Very insulting” for suggesting that Europe build its own military (again, the president should not conduct foreign policy via social media); and
    • respond to a fast-growing wildfire that has destroyed many homes and killed nine people in California by threatening to cut off federal funding to the state.
  • The “17 Angry Democrats” made their long-awaited return this week, along with multiple instances of “Fake News.”