CNN Boasts of Trump Jr. Being Heckled by ‘Real, Right-Wing Conservatives’ (They’re Not)

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On Monday, CNN spent nine minutes and 49 seconds reveling in Donald Trump Jr. being heckled by a rabid, shouting crew from the alt-right and fans of Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes during a Turning Point USA event promoting his book Triggered.

Therefore, CNN have spent nine minutes and 49 seconds more on people protesting Trump Jr. than calling out ABC for their decision to spike reporting about predator Jeffrey Epstein.

On CNN Right Now, host Brianna Keilar had three teases boasting of these protesters. The first tease had the chyron “Campus Chaos; Far Right Crowd Heckles Trump Jr Off Stage” and the others read: “Campus Chaos; Trump Jr Leaves Stage After Protests by Far Right Crowd.”
 

 

 

In the segment, Keilar claimed that the protesters were “right-wing activists.” Ah, yes. So the same people that have turned their ire to attacking the Daily Wire and editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro with anti-Semitic tropes? 

Further, such individuals would be classified as alt-right, so more akin to neo-Nazis (which, after all, are National Socialists) than the ideals of Russell Kirk, William F. Buckley, and Ronald Reagan. But sure, CNN. Tell us more about what’s conservative and what’s not.

Also have no fear, folks, because CNN’s Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter took a crack at interpreting this kerfuffle (click “expand”):

I think what we're seeing is this infighting within the conservative movement about what conservatism is in the Trump age. A lot of the voices you're hearing booing Donald Trump Jr. are far-right wing activists. They've been going to these Charlie Kirk. Turning Point USA events for weeks now because they think people like Donald Trump Jr. are not conservative enough. They say they want nationalism, they say they want even more restrictive immigration proposals, but what they’re doing is they’re defining themselves as Christian, conservative, straight, white Americans and they're trafficking in racism and homophobia and anti-Semitism. 

These were also some of the folks who were also in Charlottesville. Not all, but some of them and they’ve been trying to disrupt these events with Charlie Kirk and now Donald Trump Jr. because they think that Trumpism is not conservative enough. They want even more restrictive immigration measures, for example. What we're really seeing, Brianna, is this strain of white democratic politics and how it’s affecting the GOP. It's this fight within the GOP about what the party is going to stand for. 

Stelter was correct about the tilt of the protesters, but to apply a spin that they are a substantive corner of the “right-wing” was preposterous, much less suggest they hold sway in any future GOP. 

Just over seven hours later, AC360 host Anderson Cooper hyped that “it was conservatives” who protested the event. And once again, Stelter came back to paint a cartoonish vision of the right (click “expand”):

 

 

[T]hese are far right activists who are speaking out...Look, there's something really interesting going on, in fighting within the conservative movement about what the Trump movements stands for in the Trump age. You have these young people who have organized online, who call themselves America First. Really, I view as a slogan, as a way to say we are white nationalist. We want to see a white state. We want to preserve our white Christian identity. In many cases, these are racist, homophobes, anti-Semites but they organize online and they've, increasingly, been trying to show up at these right-wing events, trying to hijack the conversation....This is white identity politics, really at the end of the day and you think about the impeachment debate and how this relates, the President needs every support he can get, so typically, the President and his allies are on — are unwilling to back away or resist these kinds of really fringe, really extreme supporters....the President’s allowed this permission structure for hate and division in the country[.]

The hubbub arose after TPUSA cut ties with one of their personalities for having, as per Madeline Fry at Washington Examiner on October 1, “appeared at a gathering of anti-Semites and white nationalists, which was basically a who’s who of alt-right Twitter,” which included Fuentes and the delusional Jacob Wohl.

Doing a masterful job drawing a line in the sand for what is and isn’t conservatism, Fry made a sober case Tuesday about why these poisonous ilk must be stopped (click “expand”): 

But this isn't a game. It's a real problem that has to be nipped in the bud. This heckling incident helps illustrate it.

(....)

This is where the alt-right, mostly a negligible force in American politics, becomes a problem — at least in terms of branding, but also of substance. When you let people such as Fuentes stand anywhere near the periphery of conservatism where they can exercise any sort of influence, you're bound to get fleas.

(....)

More broadly, though, should any conservative want to let Fuentes and his ilk break into the mainstream as they are hoping to do? Some in the left-wing media would be happy to let them if that meant they could use it to “own the cons.” That is just one additional reason why conservatives must denounce them.

The alt-right is not the future of the Right, but to make sure of it, we must push its hateful ideologies back in the dark corner where they belong.

The Blaze also had a great post about what transpired at UCLA, which can be seen here. It included this link to a outline of their leader’s repugnant views, including this crowd’s belief that their agenda is consistent with Christianity.

Back to the Daily Wire, Matt Walsh penned a November 7 piece that spoke to another point, which was that these awful charades and proposals accomplish nothing more than further bolster the left.

And besides, who wants to help Brian Stelter accomplish that?

To see the relevant transcript from November 11's CNN Right Now, click “expand.”

CNN Right Now
November 11, 2019
1:13 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Campus Chaos; Far Right Crowd Heckles Trump Jr Off Stage]

BRIANNA KEILAR: And Donald Trump Jr.'s book tour hits UCLA’s campus, but the protesters were not actually who he expected. 

(....)

1:24 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Campus Chaos; Trump Jr Leaves Stage After Protests by Far Right Crowd]

KEILAR: Donald Trump Jr. is on a book tour, and during a recent stop at UCLA, he got heckled, but it wasn't from those that you would expect, it wasn't from those he’d expect. We'll have details ahead. 

(....)

1:34 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Campus Chaos; Trump Jr Leaves Stage After Protests by Far Right Crowd]

KEILAR: Donald Jr. — Donald Trump Jr. is in California promoting his new book. And while at UCLA, he got heckled from a rather unexpected crowd. We'll have details on that ahead. 

(....)

1:39 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Campus Chaos; Trump Jr Leaves Stage After Protests by Far Right Crowd]

KEILAR: It's probably no surprise that Donald Trump Jr. and his girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle were met by protesters inside a public appearance they had at UCLA over the weekend. He was there to promote his book, which was a lot about bashing the left, and here's what happened when he took the stage and tried to explain why the question and answer portion of this program was being canceled. 

DONALD TRUMP JR: Name a time where conservatives have disrupted even the furthest leftists on a college campus, right? It doesn't happen that way. We're willing to listen. 

CROWD: Q and A Q and A! Q and A! 

[SCREEN WIPE]

TRUMP JR.: See what I mean? That is the problem. And the reason oftentimes it doesn't make sense to do the Q and A is not because we want to listen to the questions, because we do. No! You go for some sort of sound bite. You have people spreading nonsense, spreading hate to try to take over that room. 

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE: No. No, it's because you're not making your parents proud by being rude and disruptive and discourteous. We are happy to answer the questions. [BOOING] Respect the people around you so they can hear. [HECKLING] You don't play by the same rules. Let me tell you something. I bet you engage and go on online dating, because you're impressing no one here to get a date in person. [CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

KEILAR: So here's the thing, though. A significant part of this protesting wasn't from a group on the left, this was actually right-wing activists who were protesting. I want to bring in chief media correspondent Brian Stelter with me and also Jintak Han is with us. He’s senior staff photographer and reporter at UCLA’s student newspaper. You were at the event, and tell us, what did you see and what was the feeling in the room? This was — it's so noisy in this video. Just give us a sense of what was actually going on. 

JINTAK HAN: It felt a lot like a normal Trump rally sometimes. At times — yes. There was a lot of chanting of “USA.” There was — toward the end, there was America First.” There was one protester in the back who actively protested standing by herself. She was wearing a hijab. At times directly criticizing the people on stage and it felt kind of active, yeah. 

KEILAR: And else? And what other kind — were you able to get a sense of all the other groups that were there protesting? 

HAN: A lot of the people there were Trump supporters, I felt like. There were people in the audience who passively listened and at times did flare up. After the event ended, I did see some people come up and argue with the staff. One person in particular was wearing a Hillary shirt. Another person was just wearing — he was wearing a Make America Great Again hat and arguing with a person who was accusing him of spreading lies. There were protesters outside the event who couldn't get inside, because from what I hear, the event was at full capacity and they were denied access because of fire hazard, for example, or the room being at capacity. 

KEILAR: I mean, Brian, you can tell it was pretty chaotic there. What all do we know? 

BRIAN STELTER: Yeah and I think what we're seeing is this infighting within the conservative movement about what conservatism is in the Trump age. A lot of the voices you're hearing booing Donald Trump Jr. are far-right wing activists. They've been going to these Charlie Kirk. Turning Point USA events for weeks now because they think people Donald Trump Jr. are not conservative enough. They say they want nationalism, they say they want even more restrictive immigration proposals, but what they’re doing is they’re defining themselves as Christian, conservative, straight, white Americans and they're trafficking in racism and homophobia and anti-Semitism. These were also some of the folks who were also in Charlottesville. Not all, but some of them and they’ve been trying to disrupt these events with Charlie Kirk and now Donald Trump Jr. because they think that Trumpism is not conservative enough. They want even more restrictive immigration measures, for example. What we're really seeing, Brianna, is this strain of white democratic politics and how it’s affecting the GOP. It's this fight within the GOP about what the party is going to stand for. 

KEILAR: And Brian, what has Donald Trump Jr. said about what happened at UCLA? 

STELTER: You know, he has said nothing. I reached out to his spokesperson. They are declining to comment. I think they view some of these fringe figures as not worthy of their time or attention. You know, the whole dispute was wanting to have a Q and A session, but these Q and A sessions have been disrupted by these far right-wing figures who, you know, in many cases, are racist and homophobic. Of course, the argument from Trump critics is that Trump and then the Trump movement has allowed a space, a permission structure for hate and division. And you hear Donald Trump Jr. on stage in the video you just played saying some are trying to spread hate. It's what causes these disruptive events, in this case, a college campus. Meanwhile, Donald Trump Jr.'s continues his book tour for Triggered and it’s doing quite well. It seems people are triggered for different reasons at events like this. 

KEILAR: And Jintak, I think it's worth noting there were a lot of people who wanted to listen, clearly, to Donald Trump Jr., and his, I guess, entirety, right? Not just soundbites. They wanted to be there for the event. But there were certainly people who were upset on both sides much of, let's say, the political aisle here. You must have known going into this that this was — this was something at UCLA that was going to attract a lot of attention and heat. 

HAN: Yes. I expected to see a lot of protesters, and there were, but at the event itself, I don't think I saw that many students. I did see the Turning Point USA at UCLA members there, and I did see some comments about some people not even being interested in the event sometimes. There were people — it did attract a lot for sure, because it brought in a lot of people from the outside. 

STELTER: Right. From the outside.

HAN: Yeah. 

KEILAR: Yeah.

HAN: As I said, the room was at full capacity. 

KEILAR: Yeah, from the outside as well. Good point. Jintak, thank you so much. Brian, we appreciate it. 

STELTER: Thanks.

To see the relevant transcript from CNN’s AC360 on November 11, click “expand.”

CNN’s AC360
November 11, 2019
8:45 p.m. Eastern [TEASE]

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Coming Up; Trump Jr. Leaves Stage While Being Heckled]

ANDERSON COOPER: Coming up, Donald Trump Jr. gets heckled on his book tour, leaves the stage. It turns out it wasn't a bunch of liberal college students doing the shouting. It's going to surprise you to learn who forced Don Jr. to leave.

(....)

8:50 p.m. Eastern

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: UNWELCOME RECEPTION; Trump Jr. Leaves Stage While Being Heckled]

COOPER: Donald Trump Jr.'s book promotion tour got noisy over the weekend. He and his girlfriend, Trump campaign senior advisor, Kimberly Guilfoyle, were at UCLA promoting his new book. He got heckled. He thought they were liberals doing the taunting. It turned out it was conservatives, his father's supporters in fact, that didn't like — that there would be no time for a Q&A session, a question and answer session. That's when the chants of USA changed to cries of Q&A. Take a look.

DONALD TRUMP JR.: Name a time where a conservatives had disrupted even the furthest leftist on a college campus, right? It doesn't happen that way. We're willing to listen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Q&A.

TRUMP: We're willing to listen.

PROTESTERS: Q&A. Q&A. Q&A. Q&A. Q&A.

[SCREEN WIPE]

TRUMP: You see what I mean. And that is problem, and the reason oftentimes, it doesn't it doesn't make sense to do the Q&A is not because we're not willing to talk about the questions because we do. Now, it's because people hijack it with nonsense looking to go for sort of standby. You have people spreading nonsense, spreading hate to try to take over that room.

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE: No! No it's because you're not making your parents proud by rude and disruptive, and discourteous. We were happy to answer a question. Respect the people around you so that they can hear. You don't — you don’t play by the same rules. Let me tell you something. I bet you engage and go on online dating because you're impressing no one here to get a date in person.

COOPER: That really didn't work either. Eventually, Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle left the stage. Joining me now, CNN Chief Media Correspondent Brian Stelter host of Reliable Sources here of CNN. So, it wasn't — why are Trump supporters heckling the President's son?

BRIAN STELTER: Right, and there's going to be liberals on a college campus. But no, these are far right activists who are speaking out against Donald Trump Jr. and Charlie Kirk who was on stage with him, he's a college campus activist. Look, there's something really interesting going on, in fighting within the conservative movement about what the Trump movements stands for in the Trump age. You have these young people who have organized online, who call themselves America First. Really, I view as a slogan, as a way to say we are white nationalist. We want to see a white state. We want to preserve our white Christian identity. In many cases, these are racist, homophobes, anti-Semites but they organize online and they've, increasingly, been trying to show up at these right-wing events, trying to hijack the conversation.

COOPER: Because they feel that the — what they want from the movement, the Trump movement is not —

STELTER: Is not enough, they actually want more restricted immigration. They want less — more resistance to change.

COOPER: It's kind of a sign of what President Trump has wrought.

STELTER: It is exactly yes.

COOPER: I mean, you start to play with these sorts of fires, you can't contain it.

STELTER: Right, because these keeps spreading and spreading and spreading. This is white identity politics, really at the end of the day and you think about the impeachment debate and how this relates, the President needs every support he can get, so typically, the President and his allies are on — are unwilling to back away or resist these kinds of really fringe, really extreme supporters, the kinds of try to hijack that event at UCLA. Well, they asked Donald Trump Jr. today, his spokesman declined to comment. They think they don't want to give this fringe elements any attention, but as you said, the President’s allowed this permission structure for hate and division in the country and I think when you do that, you get these extreme elements showing up, trying to answer questions, trying to ask questions, trying to interrupt.

COOPER: I don't think anybody should be shouted down, whatever their politics are.

STELTER: Right.

COOPER: But interesting that he was thinking it's all liberal and then —

STELTER: And it was bunch of real, right-wing conservatives.

COOPER: — yeah. Brian Stelter, thank you very much.

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