Trump's Creepy Obsession With DeSantis Is Eerily Familiar

(AP Photo/Butch Dill)

It’s always good to start the week off with a little zing, and what better way to do that than by writing a column that contains some heartfelt and valid criticism of former President Donald Trump?

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At least my hate mail will be buzzing for a few days.

As I am going to have to do every time I write one of these things in the coming months, I will remind everyone that people are allowed to be supportive of Trump AND critique him from time to time. This is a political movement, not a cult.

Relevant: Conservatives Don’t Worship Politicians—That’s a Lib Thing 

Reflection is never a bad thing in politics. The Democrats long ago ceased looking inward, and they’re all off the deep end psychologically now. The odds aren’t good for them ever making a return to sanity. Sure, they’ll be filled with commie buyer’s remorse once they are forced to live in the world they’re trying to bring into being, but then it will be too late.

Last month, I remarked to a friend and colleague who’s a big Trump supporter that I felt like he was mailing it in at times. His old mojo didn’t seem to be there. Then I wrote a column saying that he was getting close to having a “Please clap” moment of his own.

I began feeling this way soon after Trump started lashing out at Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, despite not having been provoked in any way. When he came up with the “Ron Desanctimonious” line, it was just…sad. When Trump is on a roll, I love his shoot-from-the-lip, extemporaneous speaking style. The “Desanctimonious” weak sauce felt like it had been workshopped in front of focus groups for a month before being let into the wild. It was made worse when he kept repeating the klunker of a line.

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This past weekend, Trump decided to go after DeSantis again, this time by comparing COVID responses. Look, if the GOP nomination fight is Trump vs. DeSantis, I want front row tickets. However — and this is going to trigger a lot of people — Trump doesn’t want to “go there” with DeSantis when it comes to coronavirus responses because it’s a comparison that makes him look horrible. Megan wrote about it in November. That triggered a lot of people too, despite being accurate.

I’ve been writing for years that Trump not only lives rent-free in the heads of his haters, but he’s building condos there now. His hardcore detractors (Rob Reiner, anyone?) always appear to be a bit unhinged because Trump can trigger them without actually doing anything.

Well, the Trump vs. Imaginary DeSantis one-way argument is making it seem that the Florida governor has acquired some prime real estate in Trump’s head.

No doubt, many believe that these preemptive strikes on DeSantis are the way to go. The most hardcore Trump devotees still think that Trump leaves every bathroom he uses smelling like roses simply because he was there.

To many of us who would vote for Trump again in a heartbeat but can still be objective in our assessments of his day-to-day activities, he’s coming off as a scared kid who’s flailing. This isn’t the swagger and Trump vibe I signed up for back in the day. Not only do I think it’s ineffective, but it’s also boring, which is something Trump doesn’t get accused of much.

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Once again, I’m someone who voted for Trump and will enthusiastically do so again if he’s the nominee, so maybe pump the brakes on all of the “TRAITOR!” caterwauling from the fainting couches.

Trump’s time would be better spent beating up on the Democrats until the GOP primary season begins in earnest. No reason to risk spraining an ankle while shadowboxing with a phantom.

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