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'He's losing his s---': Trump's advisers are increasingly worried about his mental state following days of erratic behavior

09:18 09 September 2019 Author :  

•          President Donald Trump's aides and confidants are increasingly worried about his mental state after days of erratic behavior and wild outbursts.

•          "No one knows what to expect from him anymore," one former White House official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal conversations about the president, told Insider. "His mood changes from one minute to the next based on some headline or tweet, and the next thing you know his entire schedule gets tossed out the window because he's losing his s---."

•          Trump has spent the past several days fixated on his false claim that Alabama was going to be hit by Hurricane Dorian. He has also taken time to lob attacks at his perceived enemies, like the actress Debra Messing, former FBI Director James Comey, and the "LameStream media."

•          "He's deteriorating in plain sight," one Republican strategist who is in frequent contact with the White House told Insider on Friday.

•          But one person who was close to Trump's legal team during the Russia investigation told Insider his public statements were "nothing compared to what he's like behind closed doors."

•          "He's like a bull seeing red," this person added. "There's just no getting through to him, and you can kiss your plans for the day goodbye because you're basically stuck looking after a 4-year-old now."

President Donald Trump's aides and confidants are growing more and more concerned about his mental state after days of erratic behavior, wild outbursts, and bizarre fixations.

"No one knows what to expect from him anymore," one former White House official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal conversations about the president, told Insider. "His mood changes from one minute to the next based on some headline or tweet, and the next thing you know his entire schedule gets tossed out the window because he's losing his s---."

The president's advisers are particularly worried about his stubborn refusal to acknowledge that a tweet he sent over the weekend claiming that Alabama was going to be hit by Hurricane Dorian was false. They believe that his frustration is compounded by stress about the 2020 election and the economy's recent downturn.

"People are used to the president saying things that aren't true, but this Alabama stuff is another story," the former official said. "This was the president sending out patently false information about a national-emergency situation as it was unfolding."

Trump's latest outbursts on the matter came Friday as he railed against the media for fact-checking him on the claim.

"The Fake News Media was fixated on the fact that I properly said, at the beginnings of Hurricane Dorian, that in addition to Florida & other states, Alabama may also be grazed or hit," he tweeted. "They went Crazy, hoping against hope that I made a mistake (which I didn't). Check out maps."

Trump went on to complain that "this nonsense has never happened to another President. Four days of corrupt reporting, still without an apology. But there are many things that the Fake News Media has not apologized to me for, like the Witch Hunt, or SpyGate! The LameStream Media and their Democrat ... partner should start playing it straight. It would be so much better for our Country!"

Later Friday, the president posted a misleading video that included a CNN clip from Wednesday, August 28, in which a reporter discussed how the hurricane was threatening several US states, including Alabama. The video then played the reporter saying "Alabama" on loop, cut to a clip of Trump nodding, and then to a doctored clip of CNN's logo superimposed onto a moving truck which careened off the road and caught fire.

But Trump's first tweet about Alabama being in Hurricane Dorian's path came on Saturday, by which time weather forecasters had determined that it was not going to be hit.

'He's deteriorating in plain sight'

As of Friday evening, Trump had posted 13 tweets and five maps about Alabama and the storm to try to prove his original tweet was correct, despite the fact that he'd been publicly rebuked by the National Weather Service. He also showed reporters an altered map of the storm's path on Wednesday to defend his claims, a move that may even be illegal, according to federal law.

"He's deteriorating in plain sight," one Republican strategist who's in frequent contact with the White House told Insider on Friday.

Asked why the president was obsessed with Alabama instead of the states that would actually be affected by the storm, the strategist said, "you should ask a psychiatrist about that; I'm not sure I'm qualified to comment."

Trump often airs his grievances publicly, either on Twitter or while speaking with reporters, which means the world has an unprecedented window into the president's stream of consciousness.

For instance, on Labor Day weekend, as Hurricane Dorian battered the Bahamas and made its way to the US's mainland, Trump took breaks in between golfing to post more than 120 tweets.

In addition to updates on Hurricane Dorian and quote tweets of fawning praise of his presidency from Fox News, the subjects of Trump's tweets included:

•          Former FBI Director James Comey.

•          Four freshman Democratic congresswomen of color known as "the squad."

•          AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka.

•          "Failing New York Times columnist Paul Krugman."

•          "Amazon Washington Post."

•          The "LameStream Media."

•          The liberal actress and activist Debra Messing.

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