He promised to repeal the Affordable Care Act. He demanded states deploy the National Guard to the U.S.-Mexico border. He warned congressional Republicans to hold out for a perfect deal on immigration — or else.
Former President Donald J. Trump has not even clinched the Republican presidential nomination, but he has wasted no time issuing directives as if he were making them from the Oval Office instead of between appearances in a New York courtroom.
And now, President Biden has been forced to ponder a campaign question that no president has ever had to consider: How do you run against a man who has already had the job, never conceded his election loss and is already acting like he has the job again?
Mr. Trump’s power over his party, the loyalty of his base and his swift re-emergence as the likely Republican nominee allows him to spar with Mr. Biden in ways that other candidates could not.
The president’s frustrations boiled over on Friday night as he fought to save an immigration deal from collapse in Congress. Mr. Trump has spent weeks pressuring lawmakers to oppose the deal, and Republicans appear unlikely to defy him.
In an unusual statement from a president who often keeps the most sensitive negotiations private, Mr. Biden said Friday he would shut down the U.S.-Mexico border under the emergency authority in the deal if Republicans returned to the table and agreed to it.