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The national emergency is in our president's skull

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When Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) announced he was running for president in 2015, he said he wanted to see America “no longer being passive in the face of Chinese and Russian aggression.” When Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) announced her 2020 presidential bid on Monday, she said, “I’m running for every parent who wants a better world for their kids.”

When Donald Trump announced he was running for president in 2015, he said, “Mexicans. They’re rapists.”

Why did anyone even air that clip without using seven-second delay to bleep out Trump’s creepy racist rape-fantasy madness? Why did cable TV run and rerun it? Maybe we couldn’t believe it, so it had to spool around and around so we could take it all in. But there it was: Trump’s lecherous invocation of sexual violence. His absurdist lying. And of course his lynching-era pretext for racist subjugation and violence.

Trump has declared war on our institutions because of a fantasy, in which he saves imaginary women, bound with imaginary electrical tape, from imaginary rape.

That speech was a brick to the head. It should have been inadmissible in the public sphere. In three words, Trump told us he was a vicious demagogue who would drag us all down to vanquish his imaginary demons. But at that moment, he also wasn’t tracking. Donald Trump was running for president........

© Los Angeles Times