Democrats Criticize Trump Over Hit Newson Comment

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For Trump supporters, Tuesday’s interview with Tucker Carlson was a hit for former President Donald Trump. Trump was candid and open about many topics, including his recent New York indictment and his thoughts on U.S. foreign policies and state global affairs.

It is a comment he made regarding California Governor Gavin Newsom, that left many on the right holding their pearls and looking for a reason to attack Trump. Carlson asked Trump whether he believed President Joe Biden would remain in the race for 2024. It was a remarkable show of grace for the pearl clutches to the right that Trump didn’t say anything about Biden’s mental health. He said, “Look, he watches me just like you do. And it would almost be inappropriate for me to speak about him.”

That was when he began to talk about replacements for the 2024 Democrat presidential ballot that some Republicans claim was inappropriate.

Carlson asked him who he thought would run for the presidency if Joe Biden did not. Trump first mentioned Vice President Kamala Harris. Then he mentioned Newsom:

“California has a very ambitious man, but he’s done an awful job with the state. When I was president, I used to get along great with him.”

Carlson incredulously asked, “You got along with Gavin Newsom?” Trump repeated his claim of having a cordial relationship with Newsom and stated:

“I did. I really did. He was always very nice to me and said the greatest things. He would say things like, ‘He’s doing a great job.’”

Carlson, still dumbfounded, made sure he understood and asked Trump: “About you?”

“About me. That’s why I could never hit him because he was so nice to me, just laying in wait right? But he was very nice to me, relatively speaking.”

Some on the right are angry at Trump’s apparent inability to take a mythical swipe at Newsom. The most common conclusion is that Trump is “kissing up” to a potential Democrat presidential candidate, or that Newsom is ok because he spoke positively of him, ignoring that Trump started his remarks about Newsom by describing what a horrible job he had done in California.

Newsom has spoken highly of Trump, for what it’s worthwhile. The Trump administration helped to repatriate 21 COVID-infected passengers aboard cruise ships as they docked at Oakland in March 2020. This was just before the outbreak of the pandemic. Newsom spoke out about Trump’s situation:

“He said everything that I could have hoped for.” We had a long conversation, and they carried out every word he said. Everything… was consistent with our expectation that we would repatriate the passengers and do so in a manner that honors the spirit that defines our country.

Newsom repeatedly praised Trump for his disaster assistance for California and stated that he was willing to let political differences go to solve problems. As California was devastated by wildfires in September 2020, Newsom thanked Trump again for his prompt federal response.

Republicans should know that Trump is known to make remarks about people who have been kind to him, even people who might not be expected to be so. Critics who claim Trump is kowtowing to Newsom are wrong. Newsom made a nice comment here and there. But, if Gavin Newsom hadn’t been kind to Trump would Trump have really taken a swing against him? We are always reminded that Republicans can handle such violence.

Supporters of Trump claimed the interview was selectively edited, leaving out the portion where Trump said Newsom had done a bad job. But watching Trump’s facial expressions, and appearing to smile or smirk as he made the comment should have maybe been a clue that he was being less than serious. Just listening to the portion of the interview where Trump talks about being totally serious with America’s foes, and that there would be consequences if they got out of line should be proof enough there is no “kissing up” with Donald Trump. For those on the right who think that was the case, and cannot see a bit of Trumpian humor going on, in the immortal words of Sgt. Hulka from “Stripes”: “Lighten up, Francis.”