Washington • If the President of the United States sides with a murderous dictator over our own CIA, one would think that this would be big news. If this dictator is a communist who has threatened the United States with rocket attacks, one would think that the leaders of the Republican Party are at least a little bit upset.
The news story of Tuesday, however, was dominated by President Trump and Joe Biden's overlapping visits to Iowa in building the Cornfield Clash. So little else penetrated. As far as the Republicans are concerned, they pledged their conscience and integrity long ago for tax cuts and judges. A dictator-loving president who has repeatedly attacked the FBI and the CIA has not bothered them yet. Why should this last indignation make a difference?
Before he tracked down, Trump talked to reporters outside the White House and once more enthusiastically talked about his love affair with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. He was struck by a "nice letter" he got from his dear friend, who happened to have a lot of blood on his hands.
"I can not show you the letter, obviously," Trump said. Why "obvious"? We are a democratic republic in which citizens have the right to know, right? Oops, I forgot Trump did not believe in that.
He added that it was "a very personal, very warm, very nice letter." Ah, darling! And as if searching North Korea for a new Trump resort, the president said, "North Korea has tremendous potential and will be there." Kim is "the one who feels that more than anyone else" and underlines how wise the dear leader is, and concluded, "He totally understands it."
Then came the blow to the CIA. Uninvited, Trump referred to the Wall Street Journal's report that Kim's half-brother Kim Jong Nam, who was murdered at the Kuala Lumpur airport in Malaysia in 201
Here's what Trump said, "I've seen the information about the CIA regarding his brother or half-brother. And I would say to him "- that means" he "means Kim Jong Un -" that would not happen under my patronage. Trump prefers to fly blind?
It seems we are so dulled by Trump's daily disgrace that we are leaving this one passport – the President of the United States effectively scolds our secret services for doing their job, he says To an adversary: Do not worry, I have your back, our terrible agents will not bother you again.
Not for the first time, we must ask ourselves whether confederate foreign intelligence agencies can entrust us with information – and what risks a potential informant Such a source might well consider whether Trump would send one of his dictator friends a "very personal, very warm" letter in which he triggers our covert ally, and how much information can our CIA share with our commander-in-chief?  Accidentally brought Trump, who spends a lot of time during his meeting with reporters in the White House Eighth, the message of the then vice president home.
] "The President," said Biden in Ottumwa, Iowa, "is literally an existential threat to America."
Anyone who has listened to Biden over the years knows his deep affection for the word "literally". But he literally has the right to apply it to our president. Trump's love of autocrats not only reflects his deeply deficient values. It leads him to a behavior that is really dangerous for the national security of the United States.
Biden had a great day on Tuesday. His criticism of Trump was significant and clearly penetrated the head of the president. Biden could build on that with some rethinking. He should reflect on why so many of his claims are skeptical that a defeat by Trump will lead to a "revelation" among the Republicans who would immediately rediscover their moral compasses. Apart from being obstructive republicans in the years of Obama-Biden, their refusal to take on Trump, even when he coddles a Communist thug, tells us a lot about how lost the GOP is. Biden should not pretend that his collegiality and history with some of these guys over a generation would overcome very bad habits.
In the meantime, our country deserves to know what's going on between our president and the gangster he used to call "Little Rocket Man". Maybe someone can tell us about the CIA.
E.J. Dionne is on Twitter: @EJDionne.