Trump’s Incompetence and Corruption on Display as Hurricane Nears: A Closer Look


-A dangerous hurricane is
heading toward the U.S.
and the president
has been saying
some very dumb stuff about it.
For more on this,
it’s time for “A Closer Look.”
[ Cheers and applause ]
♪♪
Donald Trump’s
first and only goal
has always been enriching
and protecting himself.
In fact, you might remember
that during
his Congressional testimony,
Trump’s ex-fixer Michael Cohen
recounted
that Trump’s presidential bid
began solely as a way
to advertise his personal brand
and make money, calling it
the greatest infomercial
in political history.
And one of the very specific
promises Trump made
in his year-and-a-half-long
infomercial
was that he was the only
candidate
who could protect Americans,
like the time he aired an ad
that ended with the slogan,
“Donald Trump will protect you.
He is the only one who can.”
Which is not only wrong,
but incredibly creepy.
It sounds like something that
would be scribbled on a note
slipped under the door by
a stalker in a Lifetime movie.
You expect to hear that
after your estranged husband
appears on the balcony
in a thunderstorm.
“Donald! You startled me.”
[ As Trump ]
I’ll protect you, Cynthia.
I’m the only one who can.
[ Thunder crashes ]
[ Cheers and applause ]
[ Normal voice ] So, if you saw
the Trump infomercial
and you bought the product,
that’s what he claimed
you were getting —
A president who would
protect you from danger,
and if you order now, two free
travel-sized containers.
[ Audience groans, laughter ]
But now it’s clear
as it’s ever been
that much like any other product
you buy from an infomercial,
it was a lot [bleep]
than it looked on TV.
For example, Trump was asked
this weekend about
a rebel faction in the country
of Colombia
known by its Spanish acronym,
FARC, whose former leader
has called for a return to
violence after a peace deal.
This is obviously
a major foreign policy issue
that any president should have
at least a basic knowledge
about.
And yet, when Trump was asked
about it,
he barely seemed to even know
what the reporter
was talking about.
-About Colombia, how do you feel
about former FARC leaders
calling for a return to war?
-Colombia, you said?
-Yeah, Colombia.
Former leaders of FARC.
-You’re talking about
the country of Colombia?
Yeah. No,
we have a great relationship,
and they’re not doing badly.
They have a problem
because of Venezuela.
A lot of people are pouring in,
but Colombia,
we’ve had a great relationship
with Colombia.
-Good Lord. It’s like when
the dumbest kid in your class
is giving an oral report
and stalling for the bell,
but he’s so dumb,
he forgot class just started.
[ Laughter ]
[ As Trump ] Colombia, you say?
Yeah, sure, here we go.
Buckle up, everybody, because
here comes an oral report
about Colombia.
Which is a country…
that is our friend.
Come on, ring, bell, ring!
[ Normal voice ]
“Donald, it’s 9:01.”
Also, what do you mean,
“You’re talking about
the country of Colombia”?
What else could
he be talking about?
Did you think he was talking
about Columbia Pictures?
[ As Trump ] We have a great
relationship with Columbia.
In fact, we’re right now
in the process of obtaining
a VHS copy of
“The Shawshank Redemption.”
[ Normal voice ] Of course,
Trump probably thinks FARC
is just how they say
“fork” in Boston.
[ Boston accent ] Honey,
we don’t need new silverware.
I’ll just go to Dunkies
and steal some plastic farcs.”
[ Laughter ]
So Trump maybe doesn’t know
there’s a country called
Colombia,
and then there’s Trump’s
ignorance
when it comes to
Hurricane Dorian,
a category 2 hurricane
currently approaching the U.S.
Trump apparently knows
just as much about hurricanes
as he does about Colombia
because when it was
first classified
as a category 5 hurricane,
Trump went out of his way to say
he had no idea what that was.
-Dorian is the fourth category 5
hurricane to threaten the U.S.
since President Trump
took office.
But the president said at
a FEMA briefing yesterday,
he’s never heard
of such a thing.
-I’m not sure that I’ve ever
even heard of a category 5.
I knew it existed,
and I’ve seen some category 4s.
You don’t even see them
that much.
But a category 5 is something
that I don’t know
that I’ve ever even
heard the term
other than I know it’s there.
[ Laughter ]
-What do you mean you’ve never
heard of a category 5 hurricane?
You’ve already had three of them
as president.
You’ve definitely heard of them,
you just forgot.
Is that why you’re wearing a hat
that says “USA”
to remind you of which country
you’re in?
[ As Trump ] God bless the…
“Ooosa.”
[ Laughter ]
[ Normal voice ]
Also, that’s not…
[ Applause ]
That’s not what anyone
wants to hear from the president
when a hurricane
is bearing down on them.
It’s like if you called 911
and the operator said
[Bleep]
“104-degree fever? I didn’t know
they went that high!
[ Laughter ]
Gary! Gary!
Did you know it went to 104?!
Gary knew.”
But the weirdest thing about
this is it’s not even
the first time Trump has used
this line.
In fact,
he has repeatedly claimed
throughout his presidency
that he’s never heard
of a category 5 hurricane
before.
-They’ve never seen a category
like this come in
’cause it came in really at a 5.
It was a category 5.
I never even knew
a category 5 existed.
This has been a category 5
which few people have
ever even heard of.
A category 5.
Nobody’s ever heard
of a 5 hitting land.
Category 5 hurricane.
Category 5.
Never heard about
category 5s before.
Got hit as a 5, category 5 storm
which just literally
never happens.
So we’ve never seen it actually
touch down as a category 5.
People have never seen
anything like that.
-The best part of that montage
are that the faces of the people
around him are definitely saying
they have heard
of a category 5 before.
Look at that. That is the face
of a guy thinking,
“Yeah, I can count to 5.”
Trump is incapable of
and uninterested in
delivering on the basic duties
of his office.
In fact, he often makes
the situation worse
like when he tweeted on Sunday
in addition to Florida,
South Carolina, North Carolina,
Georgia, and Alabama,
were most likely be hit
(much) harder than anticipated,
looking like one of the largest
hurricanes ever.
“Already category 5. Be careful.
God bless everyone.”
Okay. First of all, why is the
word “much” in parentheses
like it’s a secret?
[ As Trump ] They’ll be hit
harder — “Much” harder.
[ Laughter ]
[ Normal voice ]
Second, and most importantly,
Trump was wrong,
because 20 minutes later,
the National Weather Service had
to issue a clarification saying,
and this is real, “Alabama will
not see any impacts from Dorian.
We repeat, no impacts
from Hurricane Dorian
will be felt across Alabama.
The system will remain
too far east.”
The President
of the United States
said an entire state
was in danger from a hurricane
when it wasn’t and the
government had to correct him.
I hope we never see another
wildfire ever again,
but if you do, can you imagine
the Trump tweet?
“Wildfires spreading quickly
from California
to New Jersey to Spain.
Everyone in Barcelona,
be careful,
and God (Dios) bless you.”
[ Laughter ]
Seriously, what?
[ Cheers and applause ]
What other corrections
is the government going to
have to put out as Trump’s brain
continues to deteriorate?
We’re like a week away from
the Justice Department tweeting,
“Contrary
to the president’s tweet,
the Joker is not a threat.
He’s a character in a movie
played by Joaquin Phoenix.
There is no evacuation
of Gotham under way,
nor is Gotham a real place.”
[ Laughter ]
Trump inaccurately spreading
disinformation
about a dangerous hurricane
headed toward the U.S.,
despite the fact
that he made a big show
of staying in Washington
to monitor the storm
and even skipped a trip abroad,
sending Vice President
Mike Pence instead.
-President Trump announcing
today that he is canceling
his trip to Poland this weekend
because of Hurricane Dorian.
The Poland trip was intended
to mark the 80th anniversary
of the beginning
of World War II.
The Vice President Mike pence
will attend
in the president’s place.
-Okay, let’s be honest.
I bet Trump didn’t want to go
on this trip to begin with.
He was probably happy
to stay home.
He hates going abroad.
There’s no Fox News.
The McDonald’s there have
different menus.
And he has to wear
a full suit and tie
instead of whatever
this look is.
I guess you could call this
retiree chic.
Eventually, though,
they’re going to have to add
a message to the top of the hat
that said,
“If found, return to the…”
[ Laughter ]
Also you know the other world
leaders were probably relieved
when they heard Trump
wasn’t showing up.
Because when he does,
he always says something insane
like at the G7 in France
last week
when he was asked about
the climate crisis
which, of course,
is making natural disasters
like hurricanes far more
frequent and intense.
And he said this insane thing.
-Mr. President, there was
a significant talk at the summit
about climate change.
I know in the past you’ve
harbored some skepticism
of the science
of climate change.
What do you think the world
should be doing
about climate change, and do you
still harbor that skepticism?
-I feel that the United States
has tremendous wealth.
The wealth is under its feet.
I’ve made that wealth
come alive,
and I’m not going to lose
that wealth.
I’m not going to lose it
on dreams, on windmills,
which, frankly,
aren’t working too well.
I’m not going to lose it.
-No, you’ve definitely lost it.
You’re rambling about windmills
and making wealth come alive
under our feet.
You’re like an old prospector.
You should be wearing
a Stetson hat
with a canteen around your neck.
[ As Gabby Hayes ]
There’s riches in these hills,
boys, right under our feet!
We just got to make it
come alive!
[ Normal voice ] On top of that,
Trump also used the occasion
as a way to enrich himself
by reportedly encouraging Pence
to stay at Trump’s private
golf resort in Ireland
on Pence’s way back from Poland
with taxpayers once again
picking up the tab.
Pence was in Ireland holding
meetings in Dublin,
and yet he chose to stay
at Trump’s resort,
which is three-hour drive away
on the other side
of the country.
That’s like if every night
when I did this show,
instead of going back
to my apartment,
I stayed at a Radisson
in Baltimore
because Lorne Michaels owned it.
[ As Lorne Michaels ]
It’s a nice Radisson.
And, you know, if you don’t,
uh…
If you don’t want us
to wash your towels,
just hang them up.
[ Laughter ]
[ Normal voice ]
And when he was asked today
about this obviously
corrupt practice,
Pence clearly did not have
a good answer.
-Vice President Mike Pence
took over the boss’s duties
overseas, sparking criticism
by going well out of his way
in Ireland to stay
at a Trump resort there.
-Just to give you a chance
to respond,
Democrats
have criticized you today
for staying at the Trump
property in Doonbeg.
They say you’re enriching
the president.
What’s your response
to that criticism?
-[ Inhales deeply ]
It’s wonderful to be back
in Ireland.
[ Laughter ]
-Nothing is better than
watching the fake principal,
holier-than-no-one Pence-bot
short circuit.
Mr. Vice President,
as a religious man,
what are your thoughts
on the president paying off
an adult film star to cover up
an affair he had
while being married?
[ Laughter ]
[ As Pence ] It’s great
to be back in Ireland.
[ Laughter ]
[ Normal voice ]
He was so flummoxed,
his brain literally froze.
In fact, after that,
he just stood there on the lawn
for a few hours while
technicians rewired him.
[ Laughter ]
The president sold himself
as a strongman
who was uniquely suited
to protecting Americans,
and he has repeatedly made clear
he’s utterly incapable
of even that basic task —
Both because he’s incompetent
and because his only interest
is enriching himself.
We’ve had corrupt,
stupid presidents before,
but Donald Trump
is at a level…
-Which few people have ever
even heard of.
-This has been “A Closer Look.”
[ Cheers and applause ]
♪♪

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