October Surprises Everyone

The startling revelation that President Trump and his wife have contracted COVID-19 not only contributes another imponderable complexity to this torrid election campaign, it brings forth—amid a general tide of goodwill in favor of the president and his wife—the worst traits of the Trump-haters. The media response ranged from Joy Reid’s piercing aperçu that he was faking the illness to attract sympathy, to the Lemon-Tapper school of Trump-hate at CNN, which saw it as a direct consequence of the president supposedly taking the virus lightly, leading the resistance to it incompetently, and pretending that it was a fiction, “a hoax.” The large number of comments on social media, including from a former director of publicity for the Hillary Clinton campaign of 2016, expressing hopefulness that the president and his wife would die from the illness, shows how far the Trump-haters have decamped from America’s preferred self-image confected by Norman Rockwell, Walt Disney, and Grandma Moses.

Whether the president and Mrs. Trump recover quickly and fully from their affliction or it lingers and is a serious or even life-threatening problem for President Trump, the speed and tawdriness with which the Trump-hating media, which is chiefly conducting the Democratic campaign, turned this event into yet another excuse for battering the Trump piñata, may by its vicious hostility finally shock many American voters who have not warmed to the president. In a civilized society, where the identity of high officeholders is established by elections, it is inexcusable for partisan comments to plumb this depth of depravity and poor taste. The Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), and former president Obama all issued gracious statements of goodwill and wished the Trumps good luck. The unrelenting hatred of most of the national political media will surely, finally, this time be perceived by a great many Americans as a disgrace and as convincing evidence of the maladjustment of most political reporting from Washington.

If COVID proves to be a threat to the president’s ability to resume his office, this will shortly cause profound disconcertion in Democratic ranks. They have no campaign except Trump-hate and spurious claims that he has misjudged the public health crisis. If at the last minute he had to hand over his position as nominee to Vice President Mike Pence, there would be, at last, a heavy wave of sympathy, and there is almost no hostility to the vice president in the country. He is well enough known to gain the public’s trust and he would win an overwhelming electoral victory. So even though many of the more fervent Democrats wish the president and even his wife a very nasty or even fatal encounter with the Coronavirus, in monitoring the president’s condition, the Democrats are staring at the prospects of their own campaign.

The much more likely scenario and surely the outcome favored by the overwhelming majority of Americans of all political persuasions is the rapid recovery of the president. Though he is taxed with being slightly overweight, he is a human tornado of stamina and is very active physically. He should be, as appears from the early stages of the illness, a prime candidate for a full and swift recovery. As 94.6 percent of Americans above the age of 60 who have been attacked by the coronavirus survived it, and President Trump from his prodigious vigor and determined character, unless there is some unsuspected vulnerability, should be a prime candidate for the upper percentiles of those people at his age group able to resist this affliction. If that is the case, he will return imminently to the White House, make it clear each day that he is still working and on-the-job, and he will emerge next week with his reputation fortified not just by his ruggedness but by his stature as the nation’s leader against this pandemic who he himself has met and conquered.                             

He will have vastly increased credibility as a leader in this battle not only from the evidence of his own successful resistance to it, but in support of his view that hysteria over the Coronavirus has been exaggerated. Anyone who has witnessed the last six months impartially is aware that from the first appearance of COVID-19 as a serious threat, the Democrats and their media allies have made unheard-of efforts to frighten the country, provoke a profound economic shutdown, and blame every death on the president personally. It has been one of the most cynical political operations in American history. 

It must also be said that it has been more successful than it deserved to be; the president has paid dearly for his casual comments about the Coronavirus when it was first mentioned, and while he recouped by shutting down direct flights from China promptly at the end of January and from Europe two weeks later, he made a serious tactical error shouldering the vice president aside as chairman of the committee that he struck to deal with the public health crisis, and allowing the almost daily press briefings to degenerate into a lamentable state of indignity by replying to provocations hurled at him by a few Trump hating jackals in the White House press corps.                                 

A quick recovery from the illness—as seemed on Monday afternoon to be likely—will enable the president to address this issue with much enhanced credibility and to enjoy the popularity of those who lead in conflict and share the burdens of the common soldiers: George Washington at Valley Forge, and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth after Buckingham Palace was bombed in 1941. The president could even gain from a dashing but not cavalier treatment of the ailment, somewhat as President Reagan did with the wit and sangfroid he showed after the attempt on his life in 1981. Coming quickly through the ailment would also strongly reinforce the administration’s COVID policy preference of protecting the vulnerable more thoroughly but reopening all the rest of commerce and society as quickly as possible for the 80 percent of Americans beneath the age of 60, whose chances of dying from it are three thousandths of 1 percent. 

All decent people wish the president and Mrs. Trump the swift and complete recovery they seem to be enjoying. If it happens, as a bonus, his prospects of reelection will be substantially enhanced. Financial markets will be reassured, though they are no longer as impressionable as they were when the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose sharply on the announcement following President Dwight Eisenhower’s heart attack in 1955, by his doctor, Paul Dudley White, that “The president’s stools are firm.”                

This president has had a successful term and the only real argument for Biden against Trump is Trump’s public personality, which annoys many people. If he carries off the role of doughty COVID-sufferer with his customary panache, that factor will be reduced. This campaign, as it enters its last month, continues to be a bouncing football. This campaign, and this president, are like no other.     


Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

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45 responses to “October Surprises Everyone”

  1. Trump tested positive for COVID. Most positive COVID tests are false positives. Further, COVID kills nobody and most people who test positive have no symptoms and are unaware they have anything. The fatality rate from COVID, per the CDC is a tiny fraction of the annual flu death rate.

  2. What data informs Conrad Black to state VP Pence would win an electoral landslide in the unlikely event President Trump is forced to step-aside due to COVID-19. Considering Lord Conrad’s excellent reputation for calling future events accurately, still, I wonder where his confidence comes from.

  3. Thank you for your excellent article – please keep them coming – it is very reassuring that there are people out there that wish this president good health, hopefully it will be the huge silent majority that will sweep him into a second term.
    I don’t want to live in a nation that is full of hate towards anyone. Depressing to find out that the media has been controlling the news long before Trump –

  4. It is his common sense that informs him. Biden is a sleazy dirtbag crook. Pence a refined and dignified gentleman. A sincere and virtuous man. Who do you thjnk Americans would vote for?

  5. History, of course. That’s what happened to vice president Gerald Ford.

  6. Trump didn’t shut down flights from Europe until March 11th in his confusing oval office address, and even then he left open the UK. Roughly 2m people from Europe entered the U.S. (predominately NYC) from Europe during February which caused the massive outbreak in our largest city.

  7. We know who they are. We know what they are. Only thing left to do is eliminate them.

  8. Some folks keep lamenting that Trump hasn’t pivoted like Reagan. No, Trump hasn’t given up like Reagan.

    Reagan bowed to the powers that be and dramatically increased domestic spending and gave us amnesty. Trump should stick to his guns. The people will back him.

    • What?? No one has increased the national debt faster than Trump; however, for other reasons, he’s preferable to Biden.

  9. “[Latest Dem/MSM vileness]….may by its vicious hostility finally shock many American voters who have not warmed to the president”


  10. Mr. Black seems to believe that Mike Pence carries the same gravitas and presence that Trump supporters look for. While this may be so for a certain religious-leaning portion of his base, Mr. Pence’s previously political positions present a picture of America that most Americans do not want. However, Mr. Black did not provide much in the way to show that Americans see Mr. Pence as much more than a necessary addition to a ticket sorely lacking in traditional “conservativeness”.

  11. Its my opinion that my president, Flotus and some cabinet members and some republican cogress people were deliberately infected with covid during the appointment of judge Amy. There were no deoncrats attending, and what a perfect time for them to deploy their evil and witchcraft on their enemies.In my opinion everyone involved in any of these traitorous plots, and there have been many are guilty of treason and other crimes. The penalty for treason is hanging, and they desreve that very penalty!

  12. I am very worried that the vicious and vile Leftist Cult, which has taken over the democrat party, will win this election, NOT due to Trump, but due to the unrelenting SMEAR of Trump and his supporters for the past five years

    This has been the most gargantuan advertising campa9ghn in history, worth probably at least a TRILLION $$$ in FREE advertising to try to defeat president Trump.

    I donated to President Trump and the GOP yesterday, by a good

    • I am very worried that the vicious and vile Leftist Cult, which has taken over the democrat party, will win this election, NOT due to Trump, but due to the unrelenting SMEAR of Trump and his supporters for the past five years

      This has been the most gargantuan advertising campa9ghn in history, worth probably at least a TRILLION $$$ in FREE advertising to try to defeat president Trump.

      I donated to President Trump and the GOP yesterday, by a good amount, and will do phone calling to battleground states, which will be interesting and fun, I think. I did this in the past.

      In 2016 I made my own meme site, and posted links to it in comment boards like this, and got 100, 000 views, but, couldn’t do that now because I started a new job, and have to mostly work.

      I will pray that Hod comes to Ametica’s aid again, and save us from this Idiotic. Culture and nation destroying Leftist Cult, by the American People knowing that President Trump has been the hero, reassuring us from the totalitarian Left and all of their Idiotology.

      We all need to work by influencing people we know in these last days, and pray God saves us again.

  13. LOL, Trump is not “slightly overweight.” He’s downright obese. Just check his BMI.

  14. So it’s OK for Trump, cheered on by his acolytes, to undertake the most egregious slander of his political opponents and members of the media, but suddenly Biden is responsible when others misguidedly but not surprisingly respond in kind.

  15. Reading the column above- unless I”m mistaken- there’s no mention that COVID has killed 200,000 Americans….three times what we lost in Vietnam. But there is the helpful mention that —-> “for the 80 percent of Americans beneath the age of 60, whose chances of dying from it are three thousandths of 1 percent.” Fascinating.

  16. Spoken like a true dead-ender, Conman. I wish Trump a complete recovery and a complete defeat on Nov. 3 and thereafter.

    • So you like Rioting, burning down cities, paying more taxes, MORE GOVERNMENT PERIOD??? Wow. Good luck with all that.

      • I like peaceful demostrations not interrupted by white nationalists. I like the rich paying more taxes. I like regulaton that protects are communities from pandemics, our air and our water.

  17. He shut down flights from Europe two weeks after China?
    Who was in charge of editing this article?
    Do your home work.

  18. the october surprise was that trump is dumber than what most people thought… highly contagious and takes off the mask for the entire world to fully realize if they hadn’t already known trump is a looney buffoon . the clown doesn’t care who he infects and who dies.. i don’t care if the moron dies.. it won’t help pence after harris tears him a new one.. the republican party’s biggest mistake was getting behind trump for some judges and a tax cut… anything done can be reversed. the party will be forever a minority party..

  19. What is Best in Life, Trump? “To Crush the Democrats, See Them Driven Before You and hear the Lamentation of the Main Stream Media…”

  20. How is it possible to ascribe the rioting and looting to right wing groups with no names? BLM and Antifa are well known and clearly in evidence in New York, Chicago, Seattle, Portland, Minneapolis, & Wisconsin. As a Canadian I am puzzled how any Democrat would feel comfortable about their party’s lack of condemnation of riots and the obvious concerted media manipulation & lies over the last 4 years to take down a president who has governed in the interests of blue collar workers as opposed to white collar techies & billionaires. Bringing back manufacturing & the attendant supply chains may not satisfy the Washington elites’ financial goals but it is necessary to bring back prosperity to the entire spectrum of the American people.

    • Let’s see Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, KKK, Boogaloos Bois seem to have names.

  21. Still think it is quite SAD that *American Greatness chose to literally destroy their once truly great website and message / comment boards????

  22. …”As 94.6 percent of Americans above the age of 60 who have been attacked by the coronavirus survived it.”… in other words, 5.4% of Americans above 60 die when they contract from the coronavirus. This, plus the fact that Trump is nearly obese, if not obese (how on earth could you write he is ‘slightly overweight’?) appear to put him squarely in the ‘at risk’ category.

    A president that respects the office would to more to protect himself in the interest of the country. But we should not expect that from Trump. A tone-deaf, disappointing article.

  23. Hate doesn’t win elections. Yet the entire strategy of the Biden campaign and the TDS-MSM is based on nothing but hatred for President Trump, and, more specifically, the threat that his Administration poses to the endemic corruption of the DC swamp. Make no mistake, with billions of dollars at stake, the Democrats and the Never Trumpers will stop at nothing to defeat President Trump and preserve their places at the feeding trough, gobbling up taxpayers’ money. But hate won’t be enough. Joe Biden has spent the entire campaign reacting to President Trump. Likewise the TDS-MSM spend most of its print space, air time, and online coverage reacting to President Trump. As was the case in 2016, Candidate Trump is consuming all of the oxygen and leaving his political opponents gasping for air and grasping at straws to try to deflect attention from their paucity of anything positive to offer voters.

    • Projection. Does Biden ask for folks to be locked up at his rallies? Does Trump? Therein lies the hate.

  24. Anyone else think that the polls are being manipulated – showing the bottom falling out for Trump – so that when he wins the Dems can cry “Election Fraud!”

  25. President Trump is going to be unstoppable now. I believe that the left tried to take him out. They failed. Watch out for the lefty hail Mary if they give Biden the covid and blame President Trump. After the 2nd debate. They are desperate now.