Trump’s Naps Are Actually Worrying (2024)

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David Graham: “Trump’s bouts of drowsiness occupy a strange place in the political news. They began as an object of amusem*nt, good fodder for comedians of the late-night, social-media, and podcast varieties. (‘Don Snoreleone’ was one memorable coinage; others fittingly compared him to Rip Van Winkle, a lethargic New Yorker who’s stuck in the past and waking up to an unpleasant new reality.) Now, like many of Trump’s strangest behaviors, his impromptu naps threaten to become normal, as though catnapping through a lurid trial is typical.”

“But they shouldn’t be mere comic fodder, nor accepted as normal: They are a worrisome sign about a leading presidential candidate. If Trump can’t manage to stay awake during a trial when his very freedom is on the line, what are the chances that he will be able to focus on the intricacies of a spiraling regional war, a trade policy, or any new crisis that might face him if he returns to the White House?”

“Trump seems to get that, and appears to be actually a bit embarrassed—unusual for a man who, when caught in what might otherwise be a shameful situation, more commonly acts proud. In this case, though, Trump isn’t insisting that he’s been taking ‘perfect’ naps. Instead, he’s posting about President Joe Biden being the sleepy one.”

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