How many bad weeks can a person have in one year? If your name is Donald Trump, many.
According to more than a few headlines, this past week has been his worst. After a slow and ineffective response to the deadly rallies in Charlottesville, pressure is mounting against Trump—even from within his own party. But as we read that this is, by far, Trump’s worst week, let’s not forget that a mere few weeks ago he had another worst week. And another one preceded that. And another, ad infinitum.
By my count, Trump has had at least seven worst weeks. We’re 30 weeks in, so that’s a little less than a quarter of his entire presidency thus far.
For the sake of accuracy, and hopefully future better headlines, here’s a surely non-exhaustive list of all the times people have called any given week “Trump’s worst week”:
Winter to Spring–a slow but steady rise of bad weeks
February 17: A mere five weeks after being inaugurated, US News called this week Donald Trump’s worst as more than a few of his nominees were shot down and the call for more information about his campaign’s collision with Russia began.
A note about March and April: While these months did not feature “worst weeks” for Trump, CNN’s Chris Cillizza did take the time to write during this period that both Steve Bannon and Sean Spicer experienced worst weeks. (A fun thing to do is Google “Chris Cillizza” and “worst week” if you want to learn about a certain sort of headline construction.)
May 16: After James Comey revealed that Trump asked him last year to halt Mike Flynn’s investigation, Julian Zelizer wrote for CNN that this was “Trump’s worst week in politics, and that’s saying a lot.”
May 20: Russian tensions are getting higher, and it becomes known that the government has determined a “person of interest” inside the White House who may have colluded with Russia. This, with Trump’s sinking numbers, allows Reuters to dub it as “Trump’s Worst Week.”
Summer–And now the worst begins
June 19: Now it’s Cillizza’s turn. He writes for CNN that “Donald Trump had the absolute worst week in Washington.” This is due to the Russian investigation. At the time, it was just revealed that Trump himself is under investigation.
July 29: After getting flak for turning a Boy Scouts youth rally into a political soapbox as well as encouraging police officers at another event to increase brutality, the Guardian dubbed this week “the worst week in Trump’s short presidency.”
August 3: In the Washington Post, Charles Krauthammer wrote that, after the insane rise and fall of Anthony Scaramucci, this first week in August was “Donald Trump’s worst week.”
August 18: Two weeks later and, what do you know, another worst week. This time it’s from NBC News, who deemed his Charlottesville response worthy of the now-too-used descriptor of “Trump’s worst week.”
We’re not even a year into this presidency—there will surely be more. But for the sake of my mental health, I hope we have merely mediocre weeks for the next little bit.CGW