In the unsigned op-ed, the newspaper’s editorial board pointed to this particular personality trait of the 45th U.S. president as evidence that, were he to be reelected and serve four more years as POTUS, there would be “a tone from the top of bitterness and bile” under which “America is doomed to spiral ever apart.”
The piece begins by referencing the recent death of John Lewis, the recently deceased longtime representative and civil rights icon who received respects from both sides of the aisle, except Trump, who sent Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence in his stead to Lewis’ memorial service.
Asked about whether or not he’d be visiting Lewis’ body while it lay in state, Trump gave an answer that has been taken as terse and disrespectful.
“I won’t be going,” he said.
“Reason number three in our list of 99 reasons he mustn’t be reelected: The one American who must find a way to be a bigger man, our president, is constitutionally incapable of doing so. [He is] unable to give respect,” the editorial reads.
The piece also mentions Trump’s antipathy towards Arizona Sen. John McCain, both when he was alive and after he’d died. While McCain was alive, Trump insinuated that he wasn’t a hero although he’d been captured during the Vietnam War and held as a POW for five years, where he was routinely starved and tortured by his Vietnamese captors.
“I like people who weren’t captured,” Trump said at the time, per Politico.
And after McCain died, Trump complained that he never got a “thank you” for arranging the funeral, which the Daily News points out he didn’t actually do.
Similarly, at a Michigan rally in 2019, Trump referenced the then-recent death of one of the state’s representatives, John Dingell, and said that the former lawmaker was “looking up,” seemingly suggesting that he was in hell. Fellow Republican Paul Mitchell called the quip “petty, childish bullsh*t.”
The type of behavior Mitchell referenced is exactly why Trump is in office, the piece concluded.
“Young Americans see in the highest office a nasty, swaggering, payback-obsessed bully.”