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纽约时报双语:2020年大选变了,而特朗普没变

2020年大选变了,而特朗普没变
A Mandate to Be Less Like Himself? It Can Be Said That Trump Tried
MATT FLEGENHEIMER, MAGGIE HABERMAN
2020年10月23日
纽约时报双语:2020年大选变了,而特朗普没变

Before the president’s last, best chance to change the trajectory of his reelection bid, his mandate Thursday evening was at once clear and complicated: Be less like Donald Trump.

面对最后也是最佳的一次扭转连任竞选势头的机会,总统在周四这晚的任务既明确又复杂:不要太像唐纳德·J·特朗普(Donald J. Trump)就行。

It can be said that he tried, by his standard. He succeeded at various points in acting like the type of person he claims to disdain: a typical politician in a debate. He spoke with an inside voice while saluting his own pandemic response. He interrupted far less. He thanked the moderator for letting him chime in and did not sound sarcastic while doing so.

按照他的标准,可以说他已经尽力了。有那么几次,他真的表现得像他自称鄙视的那类人:辩论中的典型政客。他轻声轻气地赞美了自己对大流行的应对工作。他插嘴的次数大大减少。他感谢主持人让他插话,而且在插话时没有嘲讽腔调。

And it is far from certain that he helped himself enough anyway.

但无论如何,他给自己帮的忙可能远远不够。

Swiveling all night between heeding the advice of allies who have pleaded for uncharacteristic discipline and succumbing to impulses that can still consume him as he faces down an opponent he cannot process losing to, Trump stood before the electorate a candidate in conflict at his late campaign hour.

在竞选的最后时刻,特朗普站在选民面前,成了一个矛盾的候选人,一边想遵从盟友们的建议——那些人劝他要一反常态表现出有分寸的样子,而另一边,他面对一个自己无法想象会打不过的对手,时不时会控制不住冲动。

If Trump appeared to recognize that the debate represented his final mass audience less than two weeks before Election Day, he also showed the limits of even a more finely calibrated executive performance.

就算特朗普看上去意识到了这场辩论是他在距离大选日不到两周的时间里,最后一次出现在大众面前的机会,即使他拿出了慎之又慎的表现,也还是曝露了局限性。

In an election that Joe Biden’s team has sought to frame as a referendum on the incumbent, particularly his handling of the coronavirus — an endeavor that Trump has often made quite straightforward for his rival — it was the president who entered Thursday night with more work to do, given the national and battleground state surveys showing him behind.

乔·拜登(Joe Biden)的团队试图将此次大选定义为对现任总统的全民公投,尤其是他对新冠疫情的处理——特朗普总向他的对手直截了当地说明自己的努力——考虑到全国和摇摆州的民调都显示他已经落后,周四这晚有更多工作要做的人是总统。

At times, his answers seemed tailored explicitly with this deficit in mind, targeted at groups with whom he must improve his standing, like seniors, whom he pledged at one point to “protect” four times in a matter of seconds.

有时候,他的回答似乎就是针对这一差距量身定制的,瞄准的就是那些他必须提升自己在其心中地位的群体,比如老年人,他一度在短短几秒时间里四次承诺“保护”他们。

But in a moment of relentless national upheaval, manifesting in protest, public health crisis and immense financial turmoil, Trump also could not help but accentuate the most essential qualities of his tenure Thursday, reverting to fits of magical-thinking-aloud and grievance-stuffed nonrestraint.

但在全国都因抗议、公共卫生危机和严重金融危机而陷入动荡的时刻,特朗普在周四还是情不自禁强调了自己任期内最重要的品质,回到了一阵阵嘈杂的异想天开和充满委屈的发泄上。

He set off on an extended meditation — most likely to resonate with only dedicated consumers of right-wing media — on whether Biden’s nickname was “the big man” as it related to his son’s business dealings. He dwelled on “the emails, the emails, the horrible emails” with conspiratorial repetition.

他在一开始就对拜登的绰号是不是“大人物”这个问题进行了详细探讨——很可能是为了引起右翼媒体忠实受众的共鸣,因为这绰号与其子的生意往来有关。他带着阴谋论的调子,反复重申“那些邮件,那些邮件,那些可怕的邮件”。

He invoked Abraham Lincoln to praise his own contributions to Black Americans.

在赞美自己对美国黑人的贡献时,他提起了亚伯拉罕·林肯(Abraham Lincoln)的名字。

He can resemble a chef with one dish, a golfer with one club in his bag — regardless of what the next stroke might require — and a propensity to blame his caddie for the attendant result.

他好比只会做一道菜的厨师,或者球袋里只有一根球杆,也不管下一次击球需要什么杆的高尔夫球手,习惯性地把后果归咎于他的球童。

If voters reject him next month, this will be the chief reason: The 2020 campaign is different, and Trump is not.

如果选民在下个月拒绝了他,主要原因就会是:2020年大选变了,而特朗普没变。

He still focused extensively Thursday on often unsubstantiated allegations against his opponent’s son, defying some Republican allies who have counseled that the attacks connect little beyond the conservative echo chamber where Trump is already beloved.

周四,他仍在聚焦对手儿子受到的未经证实的指控,无视一些共和党盟友的意见,那就是在特朗普已经十拿九稳的保守派回音室之外,这些攻击几乎难以引起共鸣。

He still made virtually no attempt to outline a comprehensive second-term agenda that might appeal to any remaining political fence-sitters — to the extent that there are many left, in an election where many millions have already voted and most others are largely set in their views, according to polling.

他仍然几乎没有尝试去勾勒一个全面的第二任期议程,以吸引任何可能剩下的政治骑墙派——民调显示,在这场已有数百万人投票、大多数人已基本确定立场的大选中,这样的骑墙派还有不少。

Of course, political pliability was probably never going to be a prominent feature in a contest between two proud men in their 70s. Biden likewise demonstrated Thursday that he is very much the candidate that voters have come to know, for good or ill, across the decades: a creature of a bygone Washington, prone to throwback references, never entirely smooth.

当然,在这两位70多岁的骄傲男性之间的较量中,政治上的变通能力可能永远不会成为一个突出重点。拜登同样在周四表明,不论好坏,他基本还是选民们在过去几十年里认识的那个候选人:一个来自华盛顿往昔的产物,喜欢回顾过去,从来不是个随和的人。

He spoke of “Bidencare” and made a curious allusion to Hitler. He strained to supply a compelling rebuttal to Trump’s charge that he has been around Washington for almost a half-century to little effect.

他谈到了“拜登医改”(Bidencare),并用希特勒做了个奇怪的影射。他竭力反驳特朗普的指责,即他在华盛顿待了近半个世纪,却几乎一事无成。

Biden was often at his strongest pressing Trump on his stewardship during the pandemic, suggesting the president did not have the capacity to evolve in the job.

在大流行期间,拜登经常对特朗普的管理水平提出最强烈的质疑,指出总统没有能力胜任这项工作。

“He says we’re learning to live with it,” Biden said of the virus. “People are learning to die with it.”

“他说我们正在学习与之共存,”拜登在谈到病毒时说。“可人们在学习为之而死。”

A businessman who has long specialized in setting Houdini-like traps for himself and then trying to escape, Trump appeared mindful that this is almost certainly the last time he will ever be on a debate stage. In 2016, he managed to stay relatively disciplined for the final 10 days of the race, something his advisers have lamented since the disastrous last debate.

作为一名商人,特朗普长久以来一直擅长为自己设下胡迪尼般的陷阱,然而试图逃跑,他似乎很清楚,这几乎肯定是他最后一次出现在辩论台上。2016年,在竞选的最后10天里,他设法保持了相对的规矩,自上一场灾难性的辩论结束后,他的顾问们一直为此遗憾不已。

And if he was not his most unruly self Thursday, he also remains a man who believes firmly that a refusal to modulate is part of what delivered him to his position in the first place — reason enough, supporters say, to be reminded that this race is not yet over.

就算他在周四没表现出最任性的自己,他也仍然坚信,拒绝配合才是他能走到今天这个位置的原因之一——他的支持者说,这个理由也足以提醒人们,这场竞选还没有结束。

Through essentially his entire professional life, the president has delighted in making others adjust to his tics and whims, secure in the knowledge that if history was instructive, everything would more or less work out for him anyway.

在他整个职业生涯中,总统一直乐于让别人适应他的怪癖和奇想,并且确信如果历史值得参考,那无论如何,一切多多少少都将对他有利。

He created the impression of business success by insisting, as loudly and frequently as possible, that he was successful at business. He flattened campaign precedent with gleeful name-calling and race-baiting and was rewarded with the presidency. He faced impeachment after encouraging a foreign government to investigate a rival and was, in his estimation, thoroughly vindicated when Senate Republicans declined to expel him from office.

他尽可能大声且频繁地坚称自己在事业上是成功的,以此营造出他的成功形象。他用幸灾乐祸的中伤和种族煽动打破了竞选先例,并获得了总统职位的奖赏。他曾因鼓励外国政府调查一位竞争对手面临弹劾,而且在他看来,当参议院共和党人拒绝让他下台时,就完全证明了他的清白。

Even the debate rules Thursday were an exercise in adapting to Trump and not the other way around: The candidates were muted for their counterpart’s opening answers to each topic, given Trump’s fire hose of interruptions the last time.

就连周四的辩论也只是一种适应特朗普的练习,而不是相反:因为特朗普上一场没完没了的打断,候选人在对方进行每个话题的开放回答时都被静音。

Such guard rails were only ever going to curb him so much. Trump had made clear that he was going to spend a portion of the night hammering Biden over his son’s business ventures, the subject of fevered attention (and more than occasional misinformation and misleading innuendo) on the president’s favored media outlets in recent days.

用这种护栏约束他的效果是有限的。特朗普明确表示,他将在这晚花一部分时间就其子的商业活动对拜登发起攻击,这是最近几天总统所青睐的媒体们热切关注的话题(而不仅仅是偶尔的虚假信息和误导性的含沙射影)。

The strategy presented perils for both candidates. Biden has been known to grow flustered when challenged on matters of family, lashing out not only at opponents but also at members of the news media who question whether his son Hunter leveraged the Biden name for personal gain.

这一策略给两位候选人都带来了风险。众所周知,拜登面对家庭事务的质问会变得紧张,不仅会痛斥对手,还会抨击那些质疑儿子亨特(Hunter)是否利用拜登的名声谋取私利的媒体。

Trump was undeterred, as ever.

和以往一样,特朗普没有被吓倒。

For days leading up to the debate, he bypassed formal preparation but heard from a core group of advisers conveying a singular message with varying degrees of urgency: Control your temper. Do not talk over Biden. Do not come off as angry. They discussed with him issues they believe voters would want to hear about, including the economy and the competitive threat of China, in keeping with persistent Trump campaign insinuations that any foreign contacts by anyone should be examined.

在辩论举行前的几天里,他没有做正式准备,但从一群核心顾问那里听到了一个紧急程度不同、但意思相同的信息:控制自己的脾气。不要谈论拜登。不要表现得很生气。他们和他讨论了一些他们认为选民们想听的问题,包括经济和中国的竞争威胁,以符合特朗普竞选活动一贯的暗示,即任何人与外国的任何接触都应该被调查。

But inevitably, Trump is liable to return to the subject that most grabs him: himself, and how unfairly he feels he is being treated.

但不可避免的是,特朗普太容易回到最能吸引他的话题:他自己,以及他感觉自己受到了多么不公平的对待。

The first debate appeared to hurt his cause not simply because Trump could not resist talking over Biden. It was, more precisely, a very public window into the version of Trump that led former White House counsel Donald McGahn to call him “King Kong” — the version that aides have long argued is a figment of the news media’s hyperbolic imagination.

首场辩论似乎对他的竞选不利,不仅仅是因为特朗普忍不住去谈论拜登。更确切地说,首场辩论成了一扇大开的窗户,让所有人看到了被前白宫顾问唐纳德·麦克加恩(Donald McGahn)称为“金刚”的那个特朗普——他的助手们长期以来都辩称那是新闻媒体夸张想象出的虚构形象。

That initial debate spectacle underscored what some people who have known Trump for years have said privately: that his volatility and anger do not wear well on people.

首场辩论证实了一些与特朗普相熟多年的人私下里说过的话:他的反复无常和愤怒会给人留下不好的印象。

In this second night of what was supposed to be a three-debate run — the president’s own coronavirus case and refusal to debate virtually doomed another — Trump was less openly hostile.

在本应进行的三场辩论——总统自己成为新冠病毒病例,并拒绝虚拟辩论,导致另一场被取消——的第二晚,特朗普的公开敌意有所减少。

But he still made the case that five years into his career in political debates, he is a different kind of leader, hoping to run as an outsider even after four years in office.

但经过五年的政治辩论生涯后,他仍然表示,他是一个与众不同的领导人,在做了四年总统之后,他仍希望以局外人的身份参选。

“It’s all-talk-no-action with these politicians,” he said in one exchange.

“这些政客都是纸上谈兵,”他在一次对话中表示。

“I’m not a typical politician,” he said in another.

“我不是个典型政客,”他在另一次对话中说。

He was just trying to play one on television, in moderation, for at least one night.

他其实只是想在电视上——至少在这晚,适度地扮演这个角色罢了。

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