President Donald Trump is bunkering very strongly.
He has no public events scheduled on Thursday — and he has yet to emerge from the safe cocoon of the White House after the United States crossed the grim threshold of more than 250,000 coronavirus-related deaths on Wednesday.
Trump has kept a light public schedule as COVID-19 continues to rage across the nation, reaching 11.5 million cases since the pandemic began and hitting 172,000 cases on Wednesday — the second-highest number of cases reported in a single day since the pandemic began.
As he continues to nurse his wounds over a decisive loss in the presidential election, Trump has largely avoided delivering public remarks. According to the White House schedule sent to the media, his last public event was almost a week ago — delivering an update on Friday on vaccine development. That appearance was Trump’s first public remarks since Nov. 5 when he took to the podium at the White House briefing room to spew falsehood over his electoral defeat. Trump appeared in public on Veterans Day but did not deliver remarks.
Aside from failing to publicly address the nation on the intensifying COVID-19 crisis, which is almost certain to get worse as the end of the year approaches, Trump has even avoided appearances on his favorite conservative news channels — a practice that he notably kept up with even as he recovered from COVID-19 last month.
His absence is particularly surprising as he has often been described by aides and allies as almost obsessive about orchestrating optics that paint him in a dazzling light.
The relative silence from Trump since the election, aside from a steady stream of Twitter tantrums, comes as the President and first lady canceled their annual Thanksgiving trip to his Mar-A-Lago club, a move that sources at the White House described to CNN as part of Trump’s “bunker mentality” as he continues to refuse to accept that he will be one of a remarkably small cohort of presidents in recent history who have failed to secure a second term.
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany assured Fox News on Wednesday when asked if Trump would make a public appearance soon that the nation would hear from its president “at the right moment.”
That moment has remained elusive.