As White House aides and senior administration officials scramble to keep his administration afloat, Trump has become monomaniacally focused on impeachment. Policy meetings and listening sessions have taken a backseat to his indignant tweeting and live analysis of witness testimony. The details of issues that once consumed his attention — such as immigration and trade — have been outsourced to senior officials, and Trump has opted to let others do the talking during meetings with foreign leaders that he would normally command himself.
“His top priority right now is making sure voters know this is the single greatest scam in the history of politics,” said a Republican close to the White House, borrowing a phrase Trump used in a White House video circulated last week. “If that sometimes means spending less time in Washington and more time interacting with Americans, that is what he’s going to do.”…
“It’s no real mystery why he’s handing things off to other people. He cares about his grievances and his reelection, and that’s it,” said Chris Whipple, an expert on presidential schedules and author of “The Gatekeepers” about past White House chiefs of staff.
In Whipple’s view, Mulvaney’s decision to let Trump be Trump, particularly in the midst of an impeachment inquiry, has only exacerbated the problem. What Trump wants — what Trump has always wanted — is to assume perpetual campaign mode while leaving the grunt work to his deputies.