Coronavirus crisis has set off the ‘slow-motion collapse’ of the Trump presidency: Former New York Times editor

Coronavirus crisis has set off the ‘slow-motion collapse’ of the Trump presidency: Former New York Times editor
President Donald J. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence participate in a Coronavirus briefing with health insurers Tuesday, March 10, 2020, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)

Appearing on an MSNBC panel on Sunday morning, former New York Times editor Howell Raines said the coronavirus pandemic that is engulfing the country — and the failures of the current administration to deal with it — is leading to the “slow-motion collapse” of Donald Trump’s tenure as president.

Speaking with host Ali Velshi, Raines noted that Trump has never been a particularly popular president and the government’s response to the pandemic will be his undoing.

“Donald Trump has made it a centerpiece of his discussions about this, about the fact that this is media hype, part of a Democratic hoax to undermine his presidency,” host Velshi said of the growing health crisis. “And if you look at it, the idea that lots and lots of people are getting sick and the stock market has been cratering fits his narrative, because those are the two things he doesn’t want to happen. What in your esteemed opinion has the role of the media been in this whole thing? Good or bad?”

“I think on balance, much better than that of the federal government and the president,” Haines replied. “I think there’s been a calm, systemic approach to the coverage. Contrast with the fact that we are in a crisis where there’s no central planning and the president has become an uncertain trumpet.”

“I think what we’re seeing in a president who has never been popular in a personal sense, only about mid-40s in popularity polling,” he added. ” I think we’re seeing the slow-motion collapse of an ad hoc presidency in terms of Trump’s leadership.”

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