March 22, 2016


Donald Trump Is a Punch Line for Obama, Who Is Getting More Jokes Ready (GARDINER HARRIS MARCH 20, 2016, NY Times)

"How can you be shocked?" Mr. Obama asked of Mr. Romney, the former presidential candidate who accepted Mr. Trump's endorsement in 2012. "This is the guy, remember, who was sure that I was born in Kenya. Who just wouldn't let it go."

Aides recall the obviously false "birther" allegations stirred by Mr. Trump as an almost out-of-body experience. "Standing at the podium in the briefing room with the White House counsel to release the president's birth certificate was probably the most surreal moment I had in the White House," Dan Pfeiffer, a former senior adviser to Mr. Obama, wrote in an email.

Indeed, the day in April 2011 that Mr. Obama walked into the White House briefing room to directly address Mr. Trump's allegations, Mr. Trump flew to New Hampshire in his signature plane to test the waters of a presidential run. Days later, Mr. Obama made Mr. Trump the object of a string of humiliating jokes at a White House Correspondents' Association dinner, saying that Mr. Obama's release of his birth certificate would allow Mr. Trump to "get back to focusing on the issues that matter like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?"

Mr. Trump soon left the dinner, evidently bruised. It was a moment that White House aides recall with relish.

"Trump is at his very nature an insecure carnival barker, so the best way to unmask him is to show everyone that it's all a circus," Mr. Pfeiffer wrote.

Ridicule is our best offense.


Trump, of course, wants to erect a wall between Mexico and the United States, and that too fills many a conversation in Osuna's native land. He says he tries to ignore that narrative.

"If I pay attention to those things, I would look worse than him," he says.

I ask whether his countrymen are angry with Trump, or whether they laugh at him.

"They laugh about it because it's silly to think that they're going to put up that wall," Osuna says. "And we don't care. If you've got the visa, you can cross to the United States and you can do whatever you want. Everyone knows that we Mexicans work so hard and we don't come here to do whatever we want to. We are so scared about the police and other stuff. In Mexico we can do whatever we want to but not here.

"I've been in the United States for the last few years and I'm still feeling a little bit afraid to do some things, like I'm driving and I don't want to go over the speed limit because I don't know if I'm going to get in trouble or not [with police who stereotype]. We don't come to the United States to do what [Trump] says."

Posted by at March 22, 2016 3:08 PM