CNN  — 

President Donald Trump stood in front of the White House press corps on Tuesday afternoon and vented.

What was billed as a press conference rapidly turned into a quasi-campaign event, with the President of the United States free-associating about his general election opponent, the state of the country and the media. Even by Trump standards, it was a shocking performance – suggesting a level of volatility and unpredictability that has to terrify Republicans trying to run and win campaigns while sharing the same ballot with Trump in November.

I went through the transcript of Trump’s speech and pulled out the lines you need to see. They’re below.

1) “So we had a big day in the stock market, things are coming back and they’re coming back very rapidly, a lot sooner than people thought.”

“This is not a normal recession. The recessionary part of this you’re going to see down the road. You will see the effect of this recession. You’re just not going to see it right away because of all the stimulus.” – JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, Tuesday. And away we go!

2) “But then the – then the virus came in and the world is a different place but we’re now getting back and one of the reasons the market’s doing so – it’s almost at the point that it was at prior to the plague – almost.”

“Our view of the length and severity of the economic downturn has deteriorated considerably from the assumptions used last quarter.” – Wells Fargo CEO Charlie Sharf, Tuesday.

3) “China has 1.4 billion people, we have 325 – probably 325 million approximately – nobody can give the exact count, we’re trying to get an exact count but you have, over the years, many illegals who have come into the country, so it depends on how you want to count it.”

The mathematical complexities on display here are truly mind-boggling.

4) “They could’ve stopped it, they should’ve stopped it. Would’ve been very easy to do at the source when it happened.”

Trump’s insistence that China could have stopped the coronavirus from spreading seems to run counter to everything we know about its high levels of transmissibility. Couldn’t the same be said for the US – particularly given that we knew the virus was coming?

5) “Joe Biden’s entire career has been a gift to the Chinese Communist Party and to the calamity of – of errors that they’ve made – they’ve made so many errors and it’s been devastating for the American worker.”

Wait, what? We’re talking about Biden now?

6) “There’s no company and no country in the world – no country in the world has ever ripped off the United States like the incredible job that they did on this country and the people that ran it.”

Hey China – great job at ripping us off!

7) “Possibly it’s one of the reasons – certainly it’s one of the very big reasons trade and things related to trade that I got elected in the first place – I’ve been talking about it for a long time, along with many other subjects, frankly.”

[looks around room nervously]

8) “I’ve been given a lot of credit for what I did there. Took a certain amount of courage, I guess, because it sounds so nice, the Paris Climate Accord.”

[pats self on back]

9) “So Biden was here for 47 years – eight years – the last eight years, not long ago as vice president, he said one in five miles of our highways are still in poor condition.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

10) “Because you talk about a certain power of the telephone and the calls where they would call and say, no, we don’t want to do that.”

“A certain power of the telephone” sounds like the title of Coldplay’s next album.

11) “We’ve got the best tanks, the best ships, the best missiles, rockets – we have the best of everything.”

“Guns/And ships/And so the balance shifts.” – Lafayette

12) “We would have had thousands of people additionally die if we let people come in from heavily infected China, but we stopped it.”

There are 3.4 millon cases of coronavirus in the US – by far the most of any nation.

13) “We would have lost – in fact, Dr. Fauci said we would have lost thousands of additional people if President Trump hadn’t done that and I was crowd of one – because even experts didn’t want to do it, they thought it was a mistake.”

But I thought Fauci was wrong about lots of stuff???

14) “And then I did Europe when I started seeing what was going on in Italy, and Spain, and France and other countries in Europe, I did, a ban on people coming in from Europe that would have been disastrous for our country also.”

“I did Europe.” – The President of the United States.

15) “We have to get the schools open. We have to get everything open. A lot of people don’t want to do that for political reasons, not for other reasons.”

Trump dismisses anyone opposed to opening schools in the fall as doing so for purely political reasons. This is, obviously, a massive oversimplification.

16) “And they got very bad marks on the job they did on the swine flu. H1N1, he calls it N1H1. H1N1 got very poor marks from Gallup on the job they did on swine flu.”

Uh, what? Also, this is not true.

17) “But if we did – think of this, if we didn’t do testing – instead of testing over 40 million people, if we did half the testing we’d have half the cases. If we did another – you cut that in half, we’d have yet again half of that.”

Yes, think of that.

18) “Now, the testing is a good thing but at the same time it’s fodder for the fake news to report cases.”

So, it’s “fake news” to report the number of cases in the US? Er, how?

19) “They talk about cases, and the cases are created because of the fact that we do tremendous testing.”

I feel like this goes without saying but: Testing does not “create” cases of Covid-19. It identifies them.

20) “We did in New York – what we did in New York was one of the most incredible things – 2,800 beds in Javits Center but the governor used very few of them, unfortunately. Then we moved in our great hospital ship, one of our two great – we moved one also to Los Angeles.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

21) “When it was all completed, FEMA – everybody was there, doctors – we ended up getting doctors, they said we can’t man it. I said, so we’ll man it – and woman it, and that’s what we did.”

“Woman it.” Woke Donald Trump is the best Donald Trump.

22) “But Hunter, where’s Hunter? Where is Hunter, by the way?”

“Where’s Wallace at, String?” – D’Angelo Barksdale

23) “And [Hunter Biden] was unemployed as you know, he was unfortunately forced to leave the military – he was forced to leave. Didn’t have a job and all of a sudden he’s making a fortune.”


24) “We all wish well to China but what China has unleashed on the world, it’s hard to even fathom.”

OK, so Trump wishes China well but also says that they unleashed a global pandemic that they could have stopped? [Checks notes] Yeah, that checks out.

25) “Joe Biden put AOC, a young woman, not talented in many ways, in charge of his energy plan.”

The President attacking a sitting Democratic House member as “not talented in many ways.” Sure! Very normal stuff!

26) “And I know that, they know I know that, but other presidents had no idea.”


27) “I think it’s worse that actually, Bernie’s platform, it’s gone so far right, and he’s doing that because he’s begging for that vote.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

28) “But it’s still – we’ve done a great job, get no credit for it and I don’t want the credit, I want the people that have done this great job – the people that have done such an incredible job in building the ventilators and doing the testing and building a testing platform that’s been amazing.”

[narrator voice] He wants the credit.

29) “We have a very strong travel ban and we don’t want people that are going to come in and blow up our cities, do things, and frankly with the – with the liberal Democrats running the cities that we do have – where they do have problems, maybe they wouldn’t mind but I would mind and the people of this country mind.”

So, Democrats “wouldn’t mind” letting people into the country to “blow up our cities”? I feel like I should have heard more about that before right now.

30) “And we’re not talking about DACA because I’m going to take care of DACA, much better than the Democrats did.”

Trump repeatedly tried to end DACA – and was told he couldn’t by the Supreme Court.

31) “I like merit.”

“I love lamp.”

32) “Look at what’s happened to New York – crime is up, shootings are up at numbers that nobody’s ever seen before. Look at Chicago, what a disaster, and we’re waiting for them to call us cause we’re all set to go.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

33) “That basically means no windows, no nothing. It’s very hard to do. I tell people when they want to go into some of these buildings, how are your eyes because they won’t be good in five years.”

Wait, Joe Biden is against windows? Well this changes everything!

34) “And I hope you don’t mind cold office space in the winter and warm office space in the summer because your air conditioning is not the same as the good old days.”

Make Air Conditioning Cold Again.

35) “You’re going to abolish the suburbs with this.”

Biden is against windows and the suburbs? What’s next, a ban on apple pie?

36) “They worked hard to buy a house and now they’re going to watch the housing values drop like a rock.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

37) “They’re going to rip down the wall. It was hard to get that built and now it’s almost completed.”

[narrator voice] It’s not.

38) “Human trafficking, one of the worst things ever, all at a level that it’s never been at – because of the Internet, you wouldn’t think – you’d think of it as an ancient statement.”

I literally have no idea what he is talking about here.

39) “But you can’t make a left anymore and come into the United States loaded up with human traffic.”

“Can’t seem to get over to the left.” – Clark Griswold

40) “But with the monuments, where they wanted to rip down Andrew Jackson, they wanted to rip down George Washington. They were actually heading over to the Jefferson Memorial, if you can believe that.”

Quick reminder: This was a press conference, ostensibly, to talk about Trump signing executive orders about Hong Kong and China.

41) “I think we have really good poll numbers.”

Well, no.

42) “You look at the Intracoastal in Florida, you look at the lakes you see thousands of boats with Trump signs, American signs.”

Contrary to what you may think, people driving boats on a waterway is not a scientific poll.

43) “You look at what’s going on, you look at bikers for miles and miles riding up highways proudly with their signs.”

Contrary to what you may think, people driving bikes on a highway is not a scientific poll.

44) “I’m very worried about mail-in voting because I think it’s subject to tremendous fraud and being rigged.”

It’s not.

45) “She’s actually giving me some good rulings, OK? So you know that, right? People were surprised.”

Asked about Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s hospitalization, Trump responds by…..talking about himself! This feels like a good place to end.