Not surprisingly, HBO host Bill Maher and his panel had few kind words to say about President Trump and his base on Friday’s Real Time. While Maher joked about President Trump executing his negotiating team, CNN political commentator and New York Times columnist Charles Blow contrasted the President’s base with “the rest of us who are sane.”
At the start of the panel, Maher noted that “it was reported last week Kim Jong-un had his entire negotiating team killed” before asking “what if Trump killed his negotiating team?” As his audience burst into laughter, Maher asked “what if he killed Mike Pompeo and John Bolton, what would Mitch McConnell do?”
Next, Maher and the panel seemed to imply that McConnell, Lindsey Graham, and Sean Hannity would have no reaction to the President’s hypothetical murder of his negotiating team.
Maher proceeded to express his anger about the “powdered clown” and his behavior during his overseas trip, without specifics. After Maher argued that “Presidents are always, to a degree, I think, reflections of people who vote for them,” Blow mocked Trump’s base by questioning their sanity: “We center his support and his base to a degree that is not healthy for the rest of us who are sane and are looking at this through…the normal prism of morality and character because they are not.”
Blow continued his psychoanalysis by claiming that because “they treat Donald Trump as folk hero,” he is “allowed to do things that you wouldn’t allow in your own home” such as lying. He added that “because he has transcended, in their minds, to that level, the only sin that the folk hero can...commit is to...betray the folk.”
MSNBC national security analyst Clint Watts was furious with Trump because he’s been violating one of the holiest commandments in the religion of liberalism: “Thou shalt not criticize Robert Mueller.” Watts expressed outrage that President Trump would “go sit on the beach with the crosses, Star of David in the background” and criticize “a Vietnam marine veteran, FBI Director for 12 years, nominated by a Republican, stayed for a Democrat.”
Referring to Trump’s description of Mueller as a “fool,” Watts argued that “his base knows that that’s the wrong answer.” Blow disagreed and when Watts argued again that “it does bother them,” Blow pushed back: “No it doesn’t. If it bothered them…they wouldn’t be voting for him in the same…levels.”
This commentary should not have come as a surprise because, after all, MSNBC’s on-air “talent” have called the President’s base “deranged” and accused them of wanting an “ethnically pure America.” Apparently, the folks in the media bubble fail to realize that their condescending attitude only makes the Trump base support the President even more and trust the media even less.
A transcript of the relevant portion of Friday’s Real Time is below. Click “expand” to read more.
HBO's Real Time With Bill Maher
10:16 p.m. Eastern
BILL MAHER: So I have…this happened about a half-hour before we came on the air. I’ll just read it, we don’t have to talk about it a long time. I don’t think it’s a real big story but it was last week that Trump was going to put tariffs on Mexico unless they solved the immigration problem for us…now he says, a half hour ago, “I am pleased to inform you the U.S. has reached an agreement with Mexico, the tariffs are scheduled to be implemented are hereby…because he’s a king…hereby the scroll indefinitely suspended. It sounds like he just, you know, gave up because they talked him out of it; he had a brain fart last week and now it’s all over. I guess my first question is this. Speaking of negotiations, it was reported last week Kim Jong-un had his entire negotiating team killed. What if Trump killed his negotiating team? What if he…
MAHER: …What if he killed Mike Pompeo and John Bolton, what would Mitch McConnell say or do?
CHARLES BLOW: Is this a real question?
MAHER: Yeah, it is.
REP. KATIE PORTER: He doesn’t ever…Mitch McConnell doesn’t ever say or do anything.
MAHER: What would Lindsey Graham, what would Sean Hannity say?
CLINT WATTS: Would it spring us into some sort of stability where everything was calm or…
MAHER: I don’t know, I’m just asking.
WATTS: Would it make things worse?
MAHER: I don’t know. I’m just asking. All right, let’s move on to D-Day because this I take a little personally, I try not to start shows with “oh, Trump sucks” because you could do it every week. But this week, I’m sorry, Trump sucks because I am the son of, of two veterans who were both in the European campaign, a soldier and an army nurse. So when I see this…
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
MAHER: Thank you. When I see this powdered clown over there, it makes me angry, and you know, Presidents are always to a degree, I think, reflections of people who vote for them. Do you agree with me it is unimaginable that the people of 1940 would’ve elected a man like Donald Trump?
CHARLES BLOW: It’s unimaginable that the people ten years ago would have elected Donald Trump.
MAHER: Ten years ago?
BLOW: Yeah, right. But…but I think that we, we make a mistake when we look at Donald Trump and say I can’t believe and what are his supporters thinking? Because we put so much, we center his support and his base to a degree that is not healthy for the rest of us who are sane and looking at this through…
BLOW: …the normal prism of morality and character because they are not.
BLOW: As I have said before, they treat Donald Trump as folk hero. The folk hero does not have to play by the same rules of morality that the rest of us do. The folk hero is allowed to do things that you wouldn’t allow in your own home.
BLOW: You wouldn’t allow you…between you and your boss, they know he’s lying but they don’t allow their sons and daughters to lie to them and they don’t go to work and lie to their bosses. But because he has transcended, in their minds, to that level, the only sin that the folk hero can, can commit is to, is to betray the folk.
WATTS: But they know it’s wrong.
WATTS: But they know it’s wrong. You have…
MAHER: I wonder if a week like this changes anything or is it just more of the…
WATTS: You had a President go sit on the beach with the crosses, Star of David in the background and he criticized Director Mueller, a marine Viet…a Vietnam marine veteran, FBI Director for 12 years, nominated by a Republican, stayed for a Democrat. He would not show up on that battlefield, he wouldn’t show up on that beach. He found a way not to be there and he called Mueller a fool. I think his base knows, I think his base knows that that’s the wrong answer.
BLOW: It doesn’t bother them.
PORTER: But this is what he does.
WATTS: It does bother them.
BLOW: No it doesn’t. If it bothered them, they wouldn’t continue…they wouldn’t be voting for him in the same…
MAHER: It is…
BLOW: …in the same levels.