WASHINGTON (AP) – President Donald Trump has left many indications that he will try to burn the exit.
Evidence is spread throughout a life of refusal to admit defeat. They encompassed the presidency, marked by harsh, angry rhetoric, inflated conspiracy theories, and a kind of association with “patriots” drawn from the boiling ranks of right-wing extremists. The evidence was piling up at a slow pace when Trump lost the election and refused to admit it.
The culmination of everything that came Wednesday was when Trump supporters, urged by the president to go to the Capitol and “fight like hell”
The crowd went there so encouraged by sending Trump to a rally that his guerrillas surrendered live to the garbage on the spot. According to them, Trump had his back.
After all, it was the president who responded to a right-wing plot to kidnap the governor of the Democratic Party of Michigan last year with the comment: “Maybe it was a problem. Maybe it wasn’t. “
In the arc of his presidency and his life, in his own words and actions, Trump hated to lose and would not be able to cope when it happened. He turned bankruptcies into successes, failures in governance into brilliant achievements, stains from impeachment into martyrdom.
Then came the ultimate loss, the election, and the desperate machinations that politicians likened to the practices of the “banana republics” or the “Third World,” but were entirely America in the twilight of the Trump presidency.
Often with a wink and a nod in the last four tears, sometimes more directly, “We love you,” he told the Capitol Hill crowd as he gently told the clashes to return now, “Trump made a common cause with fringe elements eager to give him confirmation.” in exchange for his respect.
This made a flammable mixture when the stakes were highest. The elements came together at first glance, often in tweets. (Twitter banned Trump ‘s account on Friday, denying him the megaphone he had chosen, “due to the risk of further incitement to violence.”)
“I wish we could say we can’t see him,” President-elect Joe Biden said of the Capitol melee. – But this is not true. We could see him. “
Mary Trump saw that this came from her unique perspective as a clinical psychologist and Trump’s niece.
“It’s just a very old emotion that he was never able to process when he was a small child – horrified by the consequences of being in a lost position, horrified that he would be responsible for his actions for the first time in her life, “she told PBS week after the election.
“He’s in a position to be a loser, which in my family, for sure … was the worst possible thing you could be,” she said. “So he feels trapped, he feels desperate … more and more angry.”
The problems after the election were predictable because of Trump, but he said it would happen if he lost.
Months before the vote, he claims the system has been falsified and plans to vote by mail have been fraudulent, attacking the process so ruthlessly that it could have damaged his chances by discouraging his supporters from voting by mail. He flatly refused to assure the country in advance that he would respect the result, something that most presidents should not demand.
There was no evidence before the election that it would be tainted and evidence after the massive fraud or blunder that he and his team claimed in numerous cases that judges, whether appointed by Republicans, Democrats or Trump himself, are systematically dismissed, often like nonsense. The Supreme Court, with three judges appointed by Trump, rejected him.
That didn’t stop him.
“I hate defeat,” he said in a 2011 video. “I can’t stand defeat.”
But the aftermath of the election ultimately left him without concessions, except for the infantry, who also could not foresee their loss.
Trump’s history of advancing false and sometimes racist conspiracies rooted in right-wing extremism is long.
He praised supporters of QAnon, a confused pro-Trump conspiracy theory, saying he didn’t know much about the movement, “except that I understand that they like me a lot,” and that “it’s gaining popularity.”
QAnon focuses on an alleged anonymous, high-ranking government official known as “Q” who shares information about anti-Trump “deep state.” The FBI has warned that conspiracy theorists, such as QAnon, are internal terrorist threats.
In 2017, Trump said he was “guilty on both sides” of the deadly violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, the site of opposition between white supreme groups and protesters. He said there were “good people” on both sides.
And during a debate with Biden, Trump would not criticize the neo-fascist Proud Boys. Instead, Trump said the group should “step back and stand aside.” The remark attracted a firestorm, and a day later he tried to bring it back.
Trump has not condemned the actions of a Illinois teenager accused of fatally shooting two people and injuring a third during summer protests on the streets of Kenosha, Wisconsin. Kyle Rittenhouse pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In October, he chose not to condemn those who planned to kidnap Michigan Gov. Whitmer, a Democrat. “When our leaders meet, encourage or get closer to domestic terrorists, they legitimize their actions and are accomplices,” she said. “When they incite and contribute to hate speech, they are accomplices.”
For Mary Trump, the way her uncle was defeated helped set the stage for the toxicity she predicted would happen in November.
Republicans in the Senate and House races outnumbered him, increasing their minority in the House and retaining their majority in the Senate until the two elections in Georgia this month upset the balance of the Senate of Democrats.
His defeat on November 3 was on him, not the party. “So he won’t blame anyone else either,” his niece said. “So I think he’s probably in a position where no one can help him emotionally and psychologically, which will make things worse for the others.”
It got worse.
Oren Segal, vice president of the League’s Anti-Defamation Center for Extremism, called Wednesday’s attack “a logical end to extremism and hatred that remains out of control” during Trump’s presidency.
“If you’re surprised, you didn’t pay attention,” said Amy Spitalnik of Integrity First, a civil rights group involved in the Charlottesville violence lawsuits in 2017.
On Thursday night, Trump struck with a unifying message after months of provocation, saying in a video “this moment calls for healing and reconciliation.”
But on Friday, he again cared for his “great American patriots” and insisted that they be treated fairly, saying he would not attend Biden’s inauguration.
He acknowledged that his presidency was coming to an end, but could not – could, could never – admit defeat.
For all the insulting nicknames he has marked for his political enemies – sleepy, disgusting, crying, corrupt, crazy, small, brain-dead, goofy, with a pencil, low IQ, watermelon head, mannequin, insane, sick puppy, low energy – none was designed to hurt more than a “loser”. And nothing seemed to sting more than when he was the loser.