On Wednesday afternoon, Donald Trump stood at a podium in New York, where he was attending the United Nations General Assembly, and gave something resembling a press conference. In a discursive 81 minutes, he called Democratic Senators “con artists” for investigating allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted a girl when he was in high school. He insisted, in his signature third-person, that China has respect for “Donald Trump’s very, very large brain” and that North Korea’s brutal dictator wrote him a “very personal,” “beautiful” letter. There was word salad about Middle East peace and something about Chuck Schumer voting against George Washington.
And when it was over, despite all the agita on social media, I thought to myself: He’s going to get reelected. Or, more precisely: For all I know, he’s going to get reelected, because his voters certainly didn’t see what I just saw.
Trump has divided America into two realities, and at key moments, his language reinforces that divide.