President Trump remains mostly out of sight, but he’s working to push Biden
WASHINGTON – The lame duck is stirring. President Donald Trump has largely stayed out of the public eye in the two weeks since his election loss to Democrat Joe Biden. In nine of the 14 days since the November 3 elections, his daily schedule has been summed up in a single sentence: “The president has no public events scheduled,” the longest period he has been out of public view since who took office in January 2017..
Yet behind the scenes, Trump has taken care of the job of the presidency.
As he continues to protest the election results, Trump has been holding meetings to consider ordering a military strike against Iran, cutting the number of military troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, selling oil leases in the Alaskan wilderness, reducing government regulations and take other actions designed in part. to push President-elect Biden. He also fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper and top Pentagon leaders and cyber Homeland Security chief Christopher Krebs, who said the elections were safe. He is considering parting ways with FBI Director Chris Wray and CIA Director Gina Haspel.
Trump spends most of his days behind closed doors – he’s only made two public statements since his angry election night speech at the White House – watching cable news and tweeting furiously about Biden. He follows television news reports on the electoral dispute, his aides said, but he also takes care of the jobs at hand.
“It really hasn’t changed operationally,” said an official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss Trump’s actions in private.
In many respects, historians say, Trump’s actions are in line with what his predecessors did in the final weeks of his presidency.
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Trump holds meetings in the Oval Office, his aides said, and often acts like he’s still waiting for a second term. He roams between the second-floor White House residence and the Oval Office in the west wing, talking to aides and friends on his ever-present phone (and tweeting).
He has spoken with staff about COVID vaccines and has regular meetings with attendees, particularly his national security personnel. He met with national security advisers about the Afghanistan and Iraq downsizing plans announced Tuesday, a rare event in which Trump did not appear in person to announce the pullout and did not issue any kind of written statement.