The US president is following a consistent strategy of creating crises over immigration and race to mobilise white support for Republicans in the midterm elections
Donald Trump is still sometimes depicted as impulsive and unpredictable. But this view is mistaken. There is method – albeit an evil method – in his madness. His behaviour in the build-up to next week’s US midterm elections highlights this side of the president. He has been consistent and unscrupulous in pursuing it. Fearing that voters will elect an anti-Trump Congress on 6 November, he has made a clear choice to use hate and division to bait and provoke his opponents into a backlash which, he hopes, will energise white voters to support Republican candidates at the polls.
At least three of Mr Trump’s actions this week can only be adequately explained by this strategy. In the first, he has ordered 5,200 active duty American troops to the US-Mexico border. The objective here is not to respond to a crisis – several thousand National Guard are already there, as well as border police – but to create one. Mr Trump wants to make a show of force against a caravan of migrants from Central America, which he has mischievously described as an invasion and which he has falsely said contains “unknown Middle Easterners”. Not only is this claim untrue, but the caravan itself is daily shrinking in size and it is still in southern Mexico, weeks away from reaching the US border. Mr Trump is using his nation’s troops as partisan political props.
Link : The Guardian view on Donald Trump: using hate as bait | Editorial