Yesterday, Sen. Luther Strange (R-Alabama) lost in the GOP primary to Roy Moore, a birther conspiracist who believes that the Bible trumps the constitution and who was suspended from his position as Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court multiple times for defying federal law. Although Roy Moore really seems more his type, Trump joined Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in his ultimately losing battle to keep Moore, who is allied with Steve Bannon and has promised to oust McConnell, out of the Senate.
Today, Trump deleted a bunch of tweets—he’s not supposed to do that, by the way—enshrining his support for Strange, and also a tweet urging Moore to “WIN in Nov!” (the election is in December). The New York Times notes that he left a few earlier tweets about Strange up, politely adding: “It is unclear why the president chose to delete the tweets he did.”
Is it, though? Or was it perhaps the usual mix of spite, anger, and magical thinking?
Let’s look at this for a second, because it’s a strange (haha) glimpse into the mind of a person who believes that deleting something everyone already saw is a good idea. Our president interacts with the world like a giant baby playing peek-a-boo—a true solipsist, everything outside of Trump’s steak-and-ketchup-filled body exists only as it relates to him, with no agency of its own. If he personally can’t see anything, no one can; it’s quite easy to control the world when your understanding of it hasn’t breached the third dimension.
Of course, another plausible option is that he deleted those tweets in a fit of rage to send some kind of crude message of retribution to Mitch McConnell, and to punish Sen. Strange for losing in the best way he knows how. This, too, lacks the strategic understanding befitting a fully developed brain, because no one else on earth would do that, therefore everyone will assume it was the first thing.