“Mr. President, may I please have a word with you?” says a young man, standing in the open door frame of the Oval Office.
Trump glances up and immediately rises and walks to shake the visitor’s hand. “Dr. King, I wasn’t expecting you.”
“I visited you last year on this occasion and intend to do so next year, which I trust will be your last in this office.
“Don’t bet the farm on that. My base is solid as ever. Happy ninetieth, by the way.”
“You’re most gracious.” King extends an open hand toward a chair and says, “May I come in?”
“Of course. Please have a seat.” After his guest is comfortable, Trump returns to the chair behind his desk.
“I come not to rebuke you, Mr. President, at least not entirely, for I know you’ve suffered an enormous and no doubt painful political setback after exiling nearly a million federal workers in order to force your adversaries in Congress to build a wall odious to everything we should stand for.”
“Come on, Dr. King. I handled Nancy Pelosi like she was a baby.”
“Evidently a baby who postponed your State of the Union speech.”
“I agree with her about that just as I’m sure, in private, she understands I was right to cancel her trip overseas. I’ll give my speech when everything’s settled.”
King pauses before saying, “Your clinical obsession with a wall that’ll never be built in the form you want has compelled you to endanger the nation. Airports have fewer traffic controllers, and you’re costing the nation billions in tax collections by forcing IRS workers to walk off the job.”
“It isn’t as bad as my enemies in fake news claim. I had to wake everyone up. There’s an emergency at our border. I’m reopening the government for three weeks, but if I don’t get my wall, we’re off to the races.”
“Mr. President, I urge you to accept the billion dollars Democrats are offering to strengthen our already very efficient border patrol.”
“You know I’ve staked my campaign and my reputation on the wall.”
“Add some agents and technology, and claim victory.”
“We’re speaking confidentially, Dr. King?”
“I may do that, as long as I look tough and super successful.”