Q: Will Trump be a one-term president?
A: Yes. I think he might last that long.
If only that old joke were true. Less than four months into his presidency, Donald Trump has gone from late-night fodder to a constitutional crisis.
Did Trump or members of his campaign conspire with Russian President Vladimir Putin to undermine the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton? Have Trump cronies and family members offered to get into bed — so to speak — with Russian oligarchs to promote their money-making schemes?
How much did Trump know and when did he know it about former FBI director James Comey? And what about Russia? Can Trump locate Russia on a map? How about with three tries?
Trump lives in a different world than the rest of us, a parallel universe actually. Comey called a news conference on July 5, 2016, to announce that Hillary Clinton and her staff were “extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information” but that he was not going to prosecute her.
Why did Comey call that news conference four months before a presidential election?
And on Oct. 28, just 11 days before the election, Comey announced he had changed his mind and was reopening the FBI investigation of Hillary.
Democrats thought his meds should be checked. Trump thought he was a profile in courage.
Trump got elected — though losing the popular vote — and Comey said: “It makes me mildly nauseous that we would have had an impact on the election.”
Mildly nauseous? I think this guy is more than mildly stupid.
But he wasn’t through. Not long ago, he told the deputy attorney general, Rod Rosenstein, that he needed more money and staff to investigate the Trump and his associates’ ties to Russia.
A few days later, Rosenstein wrote a memo saying Comey should be fired.
And President Trump thought it was a really, really good idea to remove Comey rather than investigate Trump. So he fired Comey, thereby freeing up more time to practice putting on the Oval Office carpet.
Much of the national press corps smelled a rat. David Gregory, who looked overheated enough to fry an egg on his forehead, said: “This is bigger than Trump! This is about America!”
Jeffrey Toobin said: “This is a dark day in American political history.”
And there has been a lot of such days to choose from this year.
It was Conan O’Brien, however, who had the most prescient comment: “Trump just fired Comey. Apparently Trump has not forgiven Comey for making him president.”
Following the firing, things went slightly nuts at the White House, or more nuts than usual, I should say. White House spokesman Sean Spicer ended up hiding in the shrubbery outside the West Wing.
Personally, I would have called the Audubon Society and complained that a wild man was disturbing the wildlife. But Spicer finally stuck his head out of the bushes and said to the waiting TV wolf pack: “Just turn the lights off. Turn the lights off. We’ll take care of this…. Can you just turn that light off?”
So the press turned the lights off — stupid! — and was rewarded with 10 minutes of blather that few reporters believed was true. This is from the Washington Post:
Q: Did the president discuss Rosenstein’s findings with Rosenstein?
Spicer: “No, I don’t believe, I don’t know how that sequence went — I don’t know.”
Q: What was the president’s role?
Spicer: “Again, I have to get back to you on the tick-tock.”
Q: When’s the last time Trump and Comey spoke?
Spicer: “Uh, I don’t know. I don’t know. There’s some — I don’t know. I don’t know.”
Turn the lights back on.
CBS News interviewed Vladimir Putin Wednesday night and asked how the Comey firing would affect Russian-U.S. relations.
“President Trump is acting in accordance with his competence, in accordance with his law and Constitution,” Putin said. “What about us? Why we?”
Why we? Well, if you ever wondered what a former KGB thug thinks about how well our president is complying with our Constitution “in accordance with his competence,” now you know.
How will this all end? Nobody knows, but one person on Twitter has jokingly prepared Trump’s exit speech: “Owing to ill health, I must resign my position as president, effective immediately. I look forward to spending more time with my money.”
I think that was a joke anyway.
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