In a hostage-style video of Donald Trump speaking from the White House on Tuesday, the outgoing president blasted the COVID relief bill that his administration helped negotiate and insisted that he will come up with a better package in his fantasy second term.
“I am also asking Congress to immediately get rid of the wasteful and unnecessary items from this legislation and to send me a suitable bill, or else the next administration will have to deliver a COVID relief package,” Trump said. “And maybe that administration will be me, and we will get it done.”
The full – but clearly edited – video that Trump released on Tuesday:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 23, 2020
Trump is now demanding what Democrats called for 7 months ago
The video released by Donald Trump on Tuesday was bizarre in a lot of ways, but it also showed just how little involvement he has in the work of governing the country.
As CNN’s Manu Raju pointed out after Trump’s speech was released, “Trump’s team – led by Mnuchin – helped negotiate covid relief deal. WH officials are on record saying he’d sign it. And after the House passed it with a huge veto-proof majority, 359-53, and the Senate approved it, 92-6, he now says he wants it amended and calls bill a ‘disgrace’.”
Trump’s team – led by Mnuchin – helped negotiate covid relief deal. WH officials are on record saying he’d sign it. And after the House passed it with a huge veto-proof majority, 359-53, and the Senate approved it, 92-6, he now says he wants it amended and calls bill a “disgrace” https://t.co/KsAQWSosJ2
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) December 23, 2020
In other words, Trump – the self-proclaimed master of dealmaking – had absolutely no involvement in the COVID relief negotiations. Only after both parties and his own White House reached a final agreement did Trump decide to insert himself into the process by trying to tear the agreement apart.
Even more astounding is that Trump blasted the $600 stimulus payment included in the package, urging Congress to increase amount of the direct payments. What Trump didn’t mention is that Democrats passed legislation seven months ago that did just that.
As Aaron Rupar of Vox pointed out, “Dems passed a bill for double [the $600] in May. So by his own logic the GOP is to blame.”
Donald Trump thought his speech on Tuesday would make him look like he was taking charge of negotiations that have already been completed. All it did was show how little he has been paying attention for the past six months.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.