Reprinted with permission from Alternet
President Donald Trump baffled reporters on Tuesday morning with what appeared to be his shortest press conference, to date.
After giving reporters a brief "two minutes notice" according to CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins, the president, along with Vice President Mike Pence, made his way to the White House briefing room on Tuesday. Once at the podium, he opted to boast about the Dow Jones Industrial Average hitting 30,000 despite the ups and downs the stock market has seen due to the pandemic. Trump had previously predicted that the stock market would tank if Joe Biden were elected president, as he has been.
"I just want to congratulate everybody. The stock market Dow Jones Industrial Average just hit 30,000 which is the highest in history," Trump said. "We've never broken 30,000 and that's just despite everything that's taken place with the pandemic."
President Trump: "I just want to congratulate everybody. The stock market Dow Jones Industrial Average just hit 30,… https://t.co/5B9jwGPcGO— CSPAN (@CSPAN)1606239939.0
After a very brief period of rambling about stock market gains, the president abruptly exited without taking any questions from reporters. According to NBC News correspondent Peter Alexander, Trump's press briefing lasted only 64 seconds. The relatively bizarre press conference left reporters and viewers baffled. In fact, one reporter could even be heard saying, "Well, that was weird as shit."
@Yamiche After he leaves, listen for the reporter saying "Well that was weird as shit." https://t.co/lrkjlEHx3h— The Recount (@The Recount)1606239671.0
"Very, very odd. Just as quickly as President Trump came into the briefing room, he left without taking questions and after praising his administration's work," she said. "He spoke briefly about the stock market gains and the COVID vaccine."
Very, very odd. Just as quickly as President Trump came into the briefing room, he left without taking questions a… https://t.co/rIyscomrcQ— Yamiche Alcindor (@Yamiche Alcindor)1606239312.0
Trump's bizarre press briefing comes less than one day after his General Services Administration (GSA) Emily Murphy announced plans to move forward with transition to the Biden administration. There is speculation that the announcement may be the reason for Trump's seemingly odd behavior.
Under heightened pressure, Murphy released a personalized letter to President-elect Joe Biden on Monday, Nov. 23.
"I have always strived to do what is right," she wrote to Biden. "I was never directly or indirectly pressured by any Executive Branch official — including those who work at the White House or GSA — with regard to the substance or timing of my decision."