The Trump ship may finally sink in 2018

In a stark change from the trajectory of recent years, Betfair markets are taking a steadily improving view of Donald Trump’s prospects. From a low point of 43% in the wake of indictments related to the Russia investigation, the US President is now rated 53% likely to survive a full-term in office at odds of 1.9.

Considering that no such market existed about President Obama or Bush’s survival, or would have attracted much interest, the current odds are hardly a ringing endorsement. Nevertheless, it is notable that markets remain unmoved by the agenda-hogging revelations in ‘Fire and Fury’ – the book on Trump’s presidency that has rocked US politics and whose author predicts will bring him down.

Woolf’s book reveals even Trump allies agree with his critics

Michael Woolf’s claims echo countless news reports and the longstanding warnings from Trump biographer Tony Schwartz about his behaviour – obsessively watching cable TV, eating cheeseburgers, lacking the attention span to read anything of length or concentrate – and childlike, narcissistic personality. The lack of basic political knowledge is not a feigned stump tactic. Woolf says 100% of the people around Trump question his intelligence.

It reinforces the consensus that has grown across the spectrum since he entered the political fray in 2015. These barely refuted anecdotes confirm that consensus is shared by his friends, allies, colleagues and even family. This isn’t even the GOP establishment, whose belated support for Trump was blatantly opportunistic. Steve Bannon is a true believer and architect of his agenda, while others extensively quoted in the book are still serving in government.

It all fits the commonly-used Mad King analogy and feels more like a movie than the real world. Comical and terrifying in equal measure and surely unsustainable. Yet Trump has been generating chaos and absurdity ever since his primary campaign began over two years ago, and repeatedly defied those of us who deemed it unsustainable. Then, as now, removing Trump requires the acquiescence of Republicans.

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