Donald Trump, podium, Keep America Great, rally, Phoenix, AZ
Donald Trump speaking at a “Keep America Great” rally at the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix, AZ. Photo credit: Gage Skidmore / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED)

Because Donald Trump is trying to make Joe Biden’s supposed feeblemindedness a major campaign theme, it is in fact newsworthy whenever the former president’s brain short circuits... and it does so quite often.

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It is well known that Donald Trump has a problem with pronouncing longer words. That is why most of his messages are simple and don’t include more than one syllable. He can manage “Stop the Steal,” “Build That Wall,” or “Lock Her Up.” Things would be very different if he had to say “Prevent Election Interference,” “Construct That Barrier,” or “Incarcerate Her.” That would be less effective when it comes to messaging but more hilarious for those enjoying the former president’s linguistic adventures.

The latest example of one of his verbal glitches came Wednesday night, when he talked about the infrastructure legislation that passed Congress in 2021 with mostly Democratic support (although Republicans who voted against the measure are now trying to take credit for bringing infrastructure dollars to their home districts).

Trump stumbled over the phrase “infrastructure package,” which he turned into “infrastrucerschure para,” before recovering and calling it a “package of infrastructure,” which barely makes more sense.

He also referred to the $1 trillion legislation as “fake,” which must come as news to all the communities across the United States that have benefitted from it through construction projects, the expansion of high-speed internet, public transportation projects, and much more.

Trump, of course, had promised to tackle the issue with “Infrastructure Week” while in office. This became a running joke because nothing ever happened (possibly because the former president would have just talked about Infersturkkur Week and confused everybody).

Always eager to point out Trump’s failings, some left-leaning publications, like HuffPost, and social media influencers really leaned into this latest faux pas.

And that raises the question of whether this treatment is fair.

After all, Trump is an old man and not terribly bright, so should anybody be pointing out when he can’t manage to correctly pronounce even fairly simple words like “vegan,” which he got wrong five times at a recent appearance?

Ordinarily not. Who hasn’t stumbled over words and phrases before? It happens all the time and public speakers deserve a break. If you listen to anybody speak long enough, you could come up with a damning dossier of mispronunciations and poorly chosen words.

However, in Trump’s case, his various verbal escapades are fair game for one simple reason: He is trying to make the case that President Joe Biden’s feebleness and gaffes would make him a real liability in a second term.

Therefore, whenever the former president once again wrestles with the English language, simple concepts, or basic logic, pointing this out is not sensationalism or a cheap way to get clicks.

Of course, the reverse would also be true. Biden keeps hammering Trump for staging a coup. If the president were to spark his own insurrection, it would be fine for journalists to point out his hypocrisy.

That being said, the increasing number of these slip-ups should not be used to simply make fun of Trump but should rather be viewed in the context of him being guilty of exactly the behavior that he is accusing Biden of.


  • Klaus Marre

    Klaus Marre is a writer, editor, former congressional reporter, and director of the WhoWhatWhy Mentor Apprentice Program. Follow him on Twitter @KlausMarre.

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