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For Trump, only WWII alliances count as he proclaims the return of the incandescent lightbulb


Another public therapy session as Trump’s self-pity tries to outweigh all the trouble he causes. His remarks diverged again into more campaign falsehoods. Daniel Dale’s tweet thread tells the tale.


— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 9, 2019

Trump: “They (the Kurds) didn't help us in the Second World War, they didn't help us with Normandy.” He says they're only interested in fighting for “their land.”

Trump proclaims the return of the incandescent light bulb


— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) October 9, 2019

  • Trump reads his text about “abusive enforcement actions” by the government, then pauses and says, “Huh! It sounds like they're talking about me. I think they're talking about me. I might have a conflict in signing this.” (He is saying he is the abusee, not the abuser.)
  • Trump, mockingly “thank”ing Obama for “138” judicial vacancies, tells a Sir Story about how he asked how many vacancies there were and was told “138 to 142.” (It was under 110.) (Trump used “142” on Twitter a little earlier today, which he appeared to belatedly remember.)
  • Trump keeps ad-libbing about his own victimhood while reading a text about how Americans are victimized by overzealous regulation. He reads, “No American should ever face such persecution from their own government.” He adds, “Except, perhaps, your president.”
  • Trump boasts of overturning the Obama administration's “ridiculous attack” on incandescent light bulbs. “You do look better with incandescent,” he says very seriously.
  • Trump boasts, “We're bringing the incandescent bulb back.” He moves on to criticizing the “Obama-Sleepy Joe Biden Administration” over another issue.
  • Asked about Turkey, Trump says, “They've been wanting to do this for many years, as you know.” He falsely says the US presence in Syria was only supposed to last 30 days. He says, “We're speaking to both sides…seeing what can be made out of the situation.”
  • Trump says the US has removed some of the most dangerous ISIS prisoners from the area, “a certain number of ISIS fighters that are particularly bad,” to make sure they aren't let out after Turkey's invasion.
  • For his decision on Syria, Trump says, “We've had tremendous support” outside of “the little Washington area.”
  • Trump said he gave European countries a first, second, third and fourth chance to take back their nationals who have become ISIS prisoners, but they wouldn't, and the US won't be taken advantage of. He says “the Kurds will do a job,” and, “if not the Kurds, Turkey will do a job.”
  • Trump is emphasizing the history of conflict between Turkey and the Kurds, suggesting it can't be contained by the US forever. “It's amazing when you look at history and you look at culture,” he says.
  • Asked about the possibility of ISIS escapees, Trump says “Well, they're going to be escaping to Europe.”
  • Trump says that if Turkey “doesn't do it in as humane a way as possible,” he will impose “far more than sanctions” to punish Turkey. Asked what “humane a way as possible” actually means, he says, “We're going to have to define that as we go along.”
  • Trump says Erdogan “could do it in a soft manner,” or a “very tough manner,” but if he does it in an inappropriate manner, he will pay a price. Trump is not defining any of his terms, including “it.”
  • Trump falsely says, for at least the 11th time, that what the whistleblower said “bore no resemblance” to the phone call with Zelensky. The whistleblower's three main allegations about the call were all correct.


— Cathleen Decker (@cathleendecker) October 9, 2019

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  • Trump, talking China, says this is the “first time they've ever respected us.” He says he thinks China respects him.
  • Trump mocks Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr, a frequent critic of his, for how Kerr dodged a question about China, saying, “He was like a little boy, he was so scared…he was shaking.”
  • Asked if he's okay with how China is pressuring the NBA, Trump says they have to work out their own situation. He returns to criticizing Kerr and Gregg Popovich, another critic, though he says Popovich seemed less scared of the subject.
  • At length, Trump is repeating his usual claims about Biden, Hunter Biden and Ukraine, some true, some false and some unsubstantiated.
  • “We were very nice to them,” Trump says of how Republicans treated Democrats when Republicans controlled the House.
  • “There are those that say he should be prosecuted for what he did…he certainly should be impeached,” Trump says of Adam Schiff's comments at the committee, which were entirely legal. House members are not subject to impeachment.
  • Trump is talking at great length about Rep. Adam Schiff's comments. Here's my breakdown of Schiff's comments.


  • Trump is talking about the wife of the US diplomat who killed a UK teen in an auto accident and fled the UK, claiming immunity. He says it sometimes “happens” that Americans drive on the wrong side of the road there. “It was an ACCIDENT. It was a terrible accident,” he says.
  • Trump is repeating his usual false claims about how there's “no inflation” (it's still pretty low, but it exists, at 1.7%; core inflation at 2.4%) and how China is covering the cost of the tariffs.
  • Trump seemed to say that he himself has accidentally driven on the wrong side of the road in the UK: “Those are the opposite roads…I won't say it ever happened to me, but it did. When you get used to driving in our system…”
  • Trump says Turkey and the Kurds is like Israel and the Palestinians, in terms of how old and strong the hatred is, except maybe the hatred is even stronger.
  • Trump on the Kurds: “They didn't help us in the Second World War, they didn't help us with Normandy.” He says they're only interested in fighting for “their land.” He adds, “With all of that being said, we like the Kurds.”


— Jonathan Chait (@jonathanchait) October 9, 2019

  • Trump says “the military-industrial complex” has “tremendous power” in pushing for money-making wars.
  • Asked about US alliances, Trump says “our alliances” have “taken tremendous advantage of us.” He complains about NATO burden-sharing, saying some true things and his usual false things.
  • Trump says he goes to Dover Air Force base to greet slain soldiers “when I can.” Telling a detailed story, he says that families smile when they see him and thank him for coming, and he thought they were taking the death “so well,” but then the coffin comes and they “scream.”

  • I was typing fast and had to skip one thing — Trump also said the US has spent a tremendous amount of money helping the Kurds. Here are the facts:…
  • Trump is now talking about a soldier who had his nose rebuilt after it was in “a thousand pieces.” He says the soldier said his face was in “a thousand fragments, but I don't know if that's even possible.” He says he told the soldier that he has a better face than Trump's own.
  • Trump has concluded. As usual, there was a lot there.



— Colin Kahl (@ColinKahl) October 9, 2019


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