Trump Should Be Scared of the Ghosts of Halloween
Gilbert N. Kahn is a professor of Political Science at Kean University.
October 31 has come and gone but the ghosts of Halloween just past linger on for the President. Trying to look natural, Trump celebrated Halloween twice. First he invited the children of the White House Press Corps into the Oval Office; but in that innocuous gathering the President could not restrain himself from launching a series of sarcastic zingers at the young children about their parents’ jobs. The next day he and the First Lady distributed candy to the children of the White House staff at the door of the White House as if the children had just rang the doorbell at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Meanwhile, there probably were many ghosts which were truly haunting the President.
No doubt the President was stung as were all Americans by the horrifying, murderous attack in lower Manhattan by a terrorist driving a truck down the bike path between the West Side Highway and the Hudson River. Exploiting this tragedy, the President immediately used the violent event to reaffirm his growing anti-immigrant policy, as if ISIS only draws its recruits from foreign born, newly arrived Americans to be converted to their horrific ideology. Furthermore, he sought to make political hay out of the legislation–which among other provisions allowed foreign born individuals to obtain residency in this country by lottery–by attacking Chuck Schumer, one its authors; as if Schumer single handedly had enacted the law.
Trump was probably also squirming at all the Mueller costumed Halloween ghosts who were beginning to affect the President’s sleep. After the announcement on Friday and the special counsel’s revelations on Monday, there is no reason to assume that the insomniac President is experiencing any relaxing moments. Unfortunately for Trump, these Mueller ghosts are not imaginary and more indictments or revelations undoubtedly will be forthcoming.
Finally, with the Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady announcing that he would be postponing his “deal” on the tax cut and reform bill for at least 24 hours, Trump now realized that he could face very real goblins when he returns from Asia. Not to suggest that the witches in the Far East will not be challenging enough for the President, there now was a suggestion that the tax bill is still very much in a state of flux and may not pass before the end of the year. Caught in the mix of tax reform and a budget bill is the debt ceiling extension which must be in place by December 8 or the President could face a Government shut-down before Christmas.
If President Trump is seeing a chorus of Halloween costumed ghosts in his sleep, there may be good reason for it.