DEFLATED AND DEFEATED: Trump's Final Pre-Election Interview on Fox News

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During a year burdened with the deadly coronavirus pandemic, a historic recession, civil unrest, and the most divisive political environment in generations, election day may have seemed like it would never arrive. But, lo and behold, here we are. And now it's just a matter of time before the nation learns whether it will go forward in a positive direction with the sane and decent leadership of Joe Biden, or if Donald Trump will somehow stumble back into the White House for another four years of turmoil, ignorance, and hostility.

In advance of the day's voting, Trump spent some time with his bootlicking mood boosters at Fox News for a phone-in “interview.” And the “Curvy Couch” potatoes at Fox and Friends performed their Trump-fluffing duties just as they have for the past four (plus) years. The only real difference between this appearance and those Trump has done previously was Trump himself.

The normally hyped up “president” was uncharacteristically reserved this morning. In fact, he sounded exhausted and depressed. It's almost as if he knew that his prospects for winning were as remote as my prospects for dunking on Lebron James.

Trump's speech patterns were slow and halting. He appeared to have trouble forming coherent thoughts. The pauses between words signaled an inability express himself without sinking into pessimism and depression. For example, early in the segment Trump was asked by co-host Steve Doocy a simple, softball question regarding speculation that he would try to declare victory long before the results were in:

Doocy: At what point will you declare victory?
Trump: When there's victory, if there's victory. I think we'll have victory. You know, the polls are suppression polls. I think we'll have victory. But only when there's victory. There's no reason to play games. And I think we'll have victory. I look at it as being a very solid chance of winning. I don't know what the chances are. I don't know how they rate the chances. But I think we have a very solid chance of winning.

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In that brief exchange Trump repeated himself incessantly, especially the word “victory” (six times) as if he was trying to convince himself. And he says that his chances are good, even while saying that he doesn't know what the chances are or how they are arrived at. For the record, FiveThirtyEight puts his chances at ten percent, and the Economist puts them at only three percent.

Following that, Trump was asked another gimme by co-host Ainsley Earhardt:

Earhardt: What has it been like? Have you loved the job? Has it been worth it? Because you've been under so much attack.
Trump: Well, it's been mean. You've dealt with horrible people like “shifty” Schiff and “crazy” Nancy, and “cryin” Chuck Schumer. You deal with some horrible people.

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So Trump's response to whether he considered it “worth it” to be president was to complain about the “horrible” people he had to deal with. Of course, those people are the elected representatives of the people who Trump was so disrespectful to with his infantile nicknames. But more to the point, he couldn't articulate any reason why he might have “loved” serving the people of the United States as their president. It's been obvious for the past four years that he has indeed hated the job. He's done nothing but whine about having to deal with the media, our allies, and members of Congress. In fact, he elaborated in his answer to complain that dealing with the U.S. is more difficult than dealing with China, Russia, or North Korea. That's what he calls patriotism?

Finally, Trump couldn't resist taking a shot at Fox News right in the faces of his hosts:

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— Bobby Lewis (@revrrlewis) November 3, 2020

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Trump is whining that Fox News hasn't been sufficiently adoring of him. But to him anything less than 110% unflinching worship is inadequate. His examples of Fox's betrayal are mainly that the network has aired a few speeches by Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Trump says that “there are other networks for that,” affirming his view that Fox News is his personal Ministry of Propaganda.

To hear Trump in this interview one can't come away without the feeling that he's given up. He's recognized that he will not be reelected and that now he has to turn his attention to the legal jeopardy that will face him as a civilian. His demeanor is dripping with despair for the bleak future that awaits him. And for the majority of the American people, it can't come fast enough.

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