After meeting with the Secretary General of NATO today, Trump spoke with reporters in the Oval Office today about his (doomed) immigration wishlist.
TRUMP threatens to close border with Mexico as soon as this weekend, then rants about immigration during Oval Office meeting with NATO secretary general: "What we have to do is Congress has to meet quickly & make a deal... to be honest with you, we have to get rid of judges." pic.twitter.com/DAbeXVXUIK— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 2, 2019
“What we have to do is Congress has to meet quickly and make a deal.” Trump said. “We need to get rid of chain migration, we need to get rid of catch and release and visa lottery, and we have to do something about asylum, and—to be honest with you—[we] have to get rid of judges.”
Taken together, these policies would constitute a sweeping radical overhaul of our current immigration system. The last item—removing due process for alleged undocumented immigrants—would be plainly unconstitutional.
He wants to get rid of *immigration judges* - yes our immigration system is incredibly imperfect but letting USCIS, ICE and CBP do whatever they want with no review is next level bananas. And that’s saying something for him. https://t.co/CVSa1PdYXl— Kara Lynum (@karalynum) April 2, 2019
We have to get rid of judges. There you go. Full-blown authoritarian nutjob. https://t.co/evi309aEbD— Joshua Holland ? (@JoshuaHol) April 2, 2019
Civil rights and common sense concerns aside, none of these policies will pass Congress. Trump failed to get similar draconian immigration laws passed when Republicans controlled both houses and now that the Democrats have taken control of the House (in an election Trump tried to make about immigration), his immigration plans are D.O.A.
Despite this reality, Trump is still threatening to shut down the southern border unless Congress acts (his previous threat was to shut down the border unless Mexico and other Latin American countries acted). When asked about the economic impacts of such a shutdown, Trump admitted it would hurt the economy.
REPORTER: Are you worried that closing the border will be bad for the US economy?— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 2, 2019
TRUMP: "Sure, it will have a negative effect on the economy... we're going to have security in this country. That's more important than trade." pic.twitter.com/p9pdNLgoUA
But there were a couple of other odd moments during the president’s remarks. First of all, he seems to either have forgotten either what country his father was born in or is lying about it. During his usual lies about Germany “not paying their fair share” of NATO dues, Trump claimed his father had been born there. He was not.
Trump just said "my father is German, was German. Born in a very wonderful place in Germany." Fred Trump was born in New York. pic.twitter.com/U6eWYPzjrJ— Tommy MMXIXtopher (@tommyxtopher) April 2, 2019
Then, during a response to a question about the (still unreleased) Mueller report, Trump seemed to struggle to pronounce the word “origins,” instead saying “oranges.”
Wow -- Trump repeatedly mangles the word "origins," on three separate occasions saying "oranges" instead. ? pic.twitter.com/EZggYhIAO7— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 2, 2019
“I hope they now go and take a look at the oranges—the oranges of the uh, uh, investigation—the beginnings of that investigation.” He later managed to get out the word “origins,” but it was definitely strange, and people noticed.
This is...weird https://t.co/Vm6kFgQjys— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) April 2, 2019
The two incidents, once again, raised concerns about Trump’s mental fitness.
It's a tie between this and "oranges" for the brain-wormsiest part of this performance. https://t.co/oyD92JrozJ— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) April 2, 2019
What would you say if your septuagenarian uncle kept forgetting things?https://t.co/gcqyxkdNZx— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) April 2, 2019
this video is not the oranges of my concerns about Trump's mental health, but it certainly doesn't help https://t.co/T2CtoXFUh3— delrayser (@delrayser) April 2, 2019
It's the same thing he did when he tried to nail down the word "anonymous," to no avail pic.twitter.com/NUCqKbtvID— Robert Maguire (@RobertMaguire_) April 2, 2019
Apropos of nothing, anyone remember the Buzz Lightyear ass medical report we got from Walter Reed in February?— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) April 2, 2019
"I am happy to announce the President of the United States is in very good health and I anticipate he will remain so for the duration of his Presidency, and beyond."
Still, the most damning thing about this interview isn’t the words he can’t get out, it’s the ones he does get out. We’ve grown numb to it, but Trump’s authoritarian instincts coupled with his failure to grasp even the basics of Constitutional government are more than enough to declare him unfit for office.
h/t: Aaron Rupar