HOUSTON, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 02: Republican presidential candidate former U.S. President Donald Trump looks on during a campaign rally at Trendsetter Engineering Inc. on November 02, 2023 in Houston, Texas. Former President Trump's visit to Houston marks his second stop in Texas since earlier this year. The visit comes as his sons Don Jr. and Eric testified at his civil fraud in New York trial today. Trump may be forced to sell off his properties after a judge ruled that he committed fraud for years while building his real estate empire. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

Editor’s Note: Dean Obeidallah, a former attorney, is the host of SiriusXM radio’s daily program “The Dean Obeidallah Show.” Follow him on Threads. The opinions expressed in this commentary are his own. Read more opinion at CNN.

CNN  — 

Longtime political analyst Larry Sabato was asked by CNN anchor Jim Acosta this weekend about former President Donald Trump’s increasingly frequent mental lapses. Trump’s recent verbal slip-ups includes a recent campaign stop when he spoke about former President Barack Obama — alarmingly — as if he were the current occupant of the White House.

In response, Sabato told Acosta the truth: Trump’s supporters “don’t care” if he’s lost a step or two. “The Trump base, which is the biggest part of the Republican base, isn’t listening to any criticism of Trump,” Sabato said.

But the reality is that the rest of us should care about the increased frequency of Trump’s cognitive red flags, since he very well could win the presidency in 2024.

To be clear, I’m not talking about Trump saying outrageous and incendiary remarks or lying to help himself politically. We are all — sadly — used to that Trump. No, this is something far more alarming. In just the past two months of campaigning, Trump’s confusion and errors range from saying he defeated Barack Obama in 2016 to confusing the name of the city and state he was in.

Below is a rundown of just some of his most egregious recent misstatements.

September 16

In a speech to the conservative Pray Vote Stand summit, Trump made a series of errors. He confused Barack Obama with President Joe Biden, first saying he was “leading by a lot” against Obama.” (Obviously, Obama is not running in 2024.)

During that same appearance, Trump declared, “With Obama, we won an election that everyone said couldn’t be won.” Apparently realizing his mistake, Trump then quickly said, “Hillary Clinton’ — his actual opponent in 2016.

Trump also bizarrely claimed that Biden would get the United States into “World War II,” apparently meaning to say World War III.

September 25

During a speech in South Carolina, Trump confused Jeb Bush and his brother, former President George W. Bush. Trump began to reminisce about his 2016 win in the South Carolina GOP primary, telling the audience with typical bombast that, “When I came here, everyone thought Bush was going to win. They thought Bush because Bush supposedly was a military person — great.” He then added about Bush, “He got us into the Middle East. How did that work out, right?”

Fact check: In 2016, Trump defeated Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida who neither served in the military nor led the US into the Iraq war. The person he was referring to was George W. Bush, who Trump never ran against.

October 23

During a speech in New Hampshire, Trump appeared confused about which country Viktor Orban is the president of.

He told the audience: “There’s a man — Viktor Orban — anybody ever hear of him? He’s probably, like, one of the strongest leaders anywhere in the world,” Trump said, adding, “He’s the leader of Turkey.”

Actually, however, Orban is the leader of Hungary. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is the president of Turkey. The two countries aren’t even particularly close geographically.

What made this comment more surprising and unsettling is that Trump knows Orban well. He has a long history of praising the rightwing autocrat. In that same speech, Trump also erred in telling the audience that Orban’s nation shared a border with Russia. In fact, neither Hungary nor Turkey do.

October 29

As he took the stage, Trump greeted the crowd with the words, “Hello, to a place where we’ve done very well, Sioux Falls! Thank you very much.”

The problem was that Trump was in Sioux CityIowa — not in Sioux Falls, a city in South Dakota.

Iowa Republican state Sen. Brad Zaun quickly appeared on stage and whispered something in Trump’s ear, and the former President could be seen saying “Oh!’ He then returned to the microphone and corrected himself, telling the crowd: “So, Sioux City, let me ask you, how many people come from Sioux City, how many people?…Who doesn’t come from Sioux City? Where the hell do you come from?!”

It was a decidedly odd way to address people at a campaign stop.

November 11

That brings us to the most recent gaffe this Veterans Day weekend, when Trump again invoked Orban during a speech in Claremont, New Hampshire.

Trump said that the Hungarian leader had been asked what advice he would give to “President Obama” about how to proceed in a world that “seems to be exploding and imploding.” According to Trump, Orban replied that Obama “should immediately resign and they should replace him with President Trump, who kept the world safe.”

Trouble is — as almost everyone knows — Obama is not the sitting US president.

It’s these types of slip-ups that have caused some of Trump’s 2024 GOP rivals to raise red flags, suggesting that cognitive decline by the former president may be at play.

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Some of the most pointed warnings have come from Florida Gov Ron DeSantis, who warned recently, “This is a different Donald Trump than 2015 and ’16,” adding, “Now, it’s just a different guy. And it’s sad to see.” DeSantis’s campaign even claimed that Trump’s declining mental acuity might be the reason “his handlers won’t let him debate.”

To be honest, that seems more than plausible to me.

In a debate, Trump would be on stage for two hours where he would be forced to think on his feet without the benefit of a teleprompter. Of course, Trump could easily allay people’s concerns that potential cognitive decline is a motive for skipping the first three presidential debates by participating in the next one.

What makes all of this really interesting is that the shoe is now on the other foot: Trump has long railed that the 80-year-old Biden, his likely Democratic opponent in the 2024 presidential race, was showing the effects of aging in his mental abilities. In fact, Biden is just three years older than the 77-year-old Trump.

It’s true that there are times when Trump seems to function like his old self. But we do need to worry whether Trump is, in fact, suffering a dangerous mental decline, because if he wins the presidency in 2024, he will be — among other vitally important roles he’ll play as US president — commander-in chief-of our military.

And the White House is no place for someone who is confused about what city he’s in, unsure about who the real president is, or who thinks that the leader of Hungary is actually running the show in Turkey.