We’ve seen, from Hurricane Maria to the mass shooting in Pittsburgh, that Trump is basically incapable of responding in an appropriate way to national tragedy. His one real political skill is for demagoguery — turning policy problems like the trend of migrant “caravans” into mostly fake crises that appear and disappear on the national agenda when it suits Trump’s whims. The price of this sort of conduct has already been high. Losing the House would be a wake-up call for a normal president, but there is no waking up Trump — only the hope that nothing goes too badly wrong while he lasts in office.

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