GOD certainly does move in mysterious ways. The US president coming down with Covid-19 just weeks before that nation’s election might seem, on the face of it, like a wee bit of a bad omen (for him personally, if not for the world as a whole). But not according to internationally renowned theologian Donald Trump, who has a much more positive spin on his predicament.

“I think this was a blessing from God, that I caught it. This was a blessing in disguise,” said the man who famously doesn’t know the lyrics to God Bless America and reportedly calls evangelical preachers “hustlers” when they’re out of earshot.

A deity cannot be blamed for the actual existence of Covid-19, of course – that’s China’s fault. And Trump himself cannot be blamed for anyone spreading it, despite his reluctance to wear a mask and his numerous public statements playing down the seriousness of the virus. That was the Lord’s work.

God apparently blessed Donald Trump not just with the coronavirus, but with the wisdom to demand experimental treatments for his condition, and then prioritise PR stunts over his own recovery.

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It was especially thoughtful of God not to take this action back in April, when he was endorsing the injection of bleach as a cure.

A cocktail of steroids and antibodies certainly doesn’t seem to have dampened his spirits, or caused him to reflect on the playground tactics he uses against his opponents. He is rubber, Joe Biden is glue, so when people remarked that he seemed to be struggling to breathe after leaving hospital, Trump’s natural response was to take the earliest opportunity to declare his opponent half-dead.

“I sit next to Joe and I looked at Joe,” he told a Fox Business TV host yesterday. “Joe’s not lasting two months as president. He’s not gonna be lasting two months.”

Well, I sat in my house and I looked at Donald. Donald’s not lasting two months as a snake-oil salesman, especially given his promise to make the experimental treatments he received available to all Americans for free.

In the meantime though – even if we assume, without clinical evidence, that the treatment he was given is a miracle cure – most Americans will have to get by on a wing and a prayer.

Not for them a sterilised helicopter on standby in case their symptoms worsen. Not for them the opportunity to leave hospital and head straight back to the office to be served by co-workers in full PPE. Not for them the luxury of relying on a combination of bravado and Sunset Kiss pan stick foundation to convince those around them they’ve never felt better as their necks strain against their shirt collars.

“Don’t be afraid of Covid,” he told them. “Don’t let it dominate your life.”

The lily-livered folk at the Commission on Presidential Debates are doing just that though – announcing that the next debate, scheduled for next Thursday, must be a virtual affair rather than an in-person slanging match.

Conveniently, Trump has declared he won’t participate, citing concerns that the moderator will simply switch off his microphone if he descends into the kind of rambling, ranting and raving that characterised the first Trump vs Biden showdown.

Suddenly the predictions of Biden’s impending demise sound more like a sinister threat than an tasteless observation. “I sit next to Joe,” he said, like the grim reaper looming over the shoulder of his next victim.

Trump’s campaign manager and fortune-teller Bill Stepien yesterday assured the debate commission that his boss “will have posted multiple negative tests prior to the debate”, completely undaunted by the fact that he hadn’t posted a single negative test at that point.

Referring to the commission members, he explained “this group very much comes across as what you might see at an evening gala at the Metropolitan Club in DC”, adding: “For the most part, these are permanent swamp monsters.”

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Perhaps experimental drug cocktails are currently being offered to anyone in the White House who requests them, regardless of whether the president has sneezed in their presence. In fact, perhaps that’s been the policy since January 2017. It would certainly help explain a few things.

Most of us would, I’m sure, rather attend a Washington DC swamp-gala in fisherman’s waders then sit in an enclosed space in close proximity to a nest of unmasked Trump aides and family members. (Incidentally, I seem to recall Trump promising to drain that particular swamp, but perhaps that important work has been suspended due to the virus that no-one’s supposed to be afraid of).

“The safety of all involved can easily be achieved without cancelling a chance for voters to see both candidates go head-to-head,” insisted Stepien, apparently missing the key detail that no-one wants to be anywhere near Trump’s head, specifically the mouth and nose regions.

Even if the candidates could somehow be sealed into airtight boxes with personal breathing apparatus, I’m not sure the safety of “all involved” would be assured. Anyone who tunes in risks raising their blood pressure to a dangerous level, or being provoked into punching a wall in frustration.

Maddeningly and bizarrely, contracting Covid might just end up giving Trump a boost. God save us.