On Friday, Deadline: White House host Nicolle Wallace sat down with her colleague, Joy Reid to discuss her new book The Man Who Sold America. Not surprisingly, the conversation consisted of nothing more than Reid and Wallace bashing President Trump and his supporters and psychoanalyzing the President. From comparing President Trump to your “racist Uncle Jerry” and Archie Bunker to accusing him of putting on a Roman coliseum with “little brown kids and abuelas” for his base, the MSNBC personalities made it perfectly clear just how much they despise President Trump.
Before introducing Reid, Wallace read aloud an excerpt of the book talking about how “Trump seemed to normalize...the public display of thuggery and open racism by white Americans who felt empowered to assert themselves as the arbiters of cultural legitimacy in his name” and accusing President Trump of “waging a new American civil war.” Reid told Wallace that she rejected the idea that President Trump was elected “because of economic anxiety,” arguing that “what really elected him was racialized anxiety so that if your economic situation isn’t as good as your parents’, you blame it on Mexicans.”
Reid proceeded to compare President Trump to “your racist Uncle Jerry that’s sitting around screaming about Japan and China ruining America and Mexicans...moving into the neighborhood and making it dirty and trashy.” Wallace brought up the “Archie Bunker parallel,” adding that “Archie Bunker was a lot warmer.” Reid agreed with Wallace, telling her that unlike President Trump, “he had a heart.”
Reid went on to argue that President Trump resents the fact that President Obama had movie stars join him for movie nights at the White House: “I think, in his mind, if the black guy can get all of that by being elected President, so should I...I deserve it more than him.” According to Reid, President Trump’s base has a desire to “be the center of attention” of the culture and are resentful that “liberals control the commanding heights of culture” in addition to the fact that “the most impressive and the most fashionable people” are “black or brown.”
For the record, President Trump’s base does not necessarily want to be “the center of attention” of the culture. They would just appreciate it if once in a while, the media-Hollywood industrial complex would take a break from its 24/7 attacks on Trump voters.
Nonetheless, Reid continued to share her conspiracy theory. Reid alleged that President Trump capitalized on his base’s resentment by saying to them: “you’re the center of my attention and I don’t give a damn about the brown people and I will hurt them for you. I will let you watch them get hurt. I’ll do a Roman Coliseum for you and put little brown kids and abuelas in it so that you can see...I’ll physically demonstrate that I’m your guy and not their guy and it’s not their country.”
The conversation closed with Wallace describing the book as “amazing” and telling her audience to “go buy it if you haven’t already.” It looks like The Man Who Sold America is a must-read for those afflicted with Trump Derangement Syndrome.
A transcript of the relevant portion of Friday’s edition of Deadline: White House is below. Click “expand” to read more.
Deadline: White House
PRESIDENT TRUMP: When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists; and some, I assume, are good people. Our inner cities, African-Americans, Hispanics are living in hell because it’s so dangerous…you walk down the street, you get shot. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides.
NICOLLE WALLACE: It has always, always been at the heart of candidate Trump’s pitch to voters and President Trump’s and it’s been an undercurrent of his entire presidency. As our friend Joy Reid writes in her new book, titled The Man Who Sold America, race was the secret to unlocking the outcome of the 2016 election. She writes this: “Trump seemed to normalize…the public display of thuggery and open racism by white Americans who felt empowered to assert themselves as the arbiters of cultural legitimacy in his name. They would decide who was really an American, who belonged in public spaces, and who had any rights they were bound to respect. Donald Trump was indeed waging a new American civil war.” I remember seeing you and talking to you on election night when sort of the shock was still…
JOY REID: Yeah.
WALLACE: …really raw; that the…and, and, and my offense to Trump’s campaign was sort of built around two pillars; where I accepted the polls because I thought Americans would not elect someone who said “women let you do anything when you’re famous, you can grab them in the (bleep),” who said things, like, you know, “she was bleeding everywhere, bleeding out her eyes,” who attacked the former Miss America pageant and then, and then all of the things that we just played and then the Muslim ban, which we didn’t play. He, he…running for American President, where some of our closest allies, for better or for worse, are the United Arab Emirates; I mean, he’s ended up being very close to, the Saudis.
WALLACE: I mean, you know, the, the, the, the racism out in public, I remember being, thinking on election night, that was going to be one of the biggest finger in the socket things for our country, and it has been.
WALLACE: And, and you write the best book that’s been written to date about that.
REID: Thank you, that’s very kind. You know, and you know who else used to agree with that? Lindsey Graham.
REID: Lindsey Graham said that if Donald Trump…
WALLACE: Jeb Bush. Yeah.
REID: …is the nominee, the Republican Party would lose and would deserve to; he’s a bigot and he’s not fit to be President. I mean, the reality is is that, you know, I interviewed a ton of people for this book including and read a lot of research just to, just to make sure that I was clear on how he got elected and there is no data to support the idea that Donald Trump was elected because of economic anxiety. What really elected him was racialized anxiety so that if your economic situation isn’t as good as your parents, you blame it on Mexicans, right? So that you don’t locate it where it actually came from; which is a changing economy, the fact that coal is dead, the fact that multinational corporations would rather employ cheap labor overseas. Like, you don’t process that. You process “it’s Mexicans” and that’s simple. I remember one thing that I quote in the book and it’s not my original quote is that “Democrats and people of color may not control the economy, the economics, the money but liberals control the commanding heights of culture and for a lot of white Americans, the idea that they don’t control the culture, that the culture doesn’t revolve around anymore, them anymore, that they’re not the focus of the Democratic Party’s attention, that they’re now looking at these brown immigrants. They care more about them than me.” You know, the…I turn on the TV and everyone who I’m told is the coolest and the most important and the most impressive and the most fashionable are black or brown; that Oprah is the person that I think is, is…that I’m supposed to think is the most important rich person, not someone like me. Donald Trump is your, you know, racist Uncle Jerry that’s sitting around screaming about Japan and China ruining America and Mexicans being, you know, moving into the neighborhood and making it dirty and trashy. That’s who he is and so he can live in a gold palace all he wants. He’s them.
WALLACE: You know, and…and this Archie Bunker parallel has been drawn although I think Archie Bunker was a lot warmer.
REID: He had a heart.
WALLACE: A lot more lovely…
WALLACE: …and family that cared about him. I think if you see Trump…
REID: But he was also from Queens, he’s from the same place as Trump.
WALLACE: That’s true but if you see Trump in public, I mean, I think he’s much more isolated than, than Archie but...
WALLACE: …we can have this debate another time. I want to stay on…on the book. This point about culture, though, I…I , I was flipping around, I came across Fox, and the segment was about telling Hollywood we don’t need your stinking movies and we don’t…you know, and I was like “really?” Like, they have so much news. It was like, the week of a foreign trip and a…
WALLACE: …and a, you know, a fake tariff war and, you know, stuff that like, I would think Republicans used to care about. I mean, what is the sort of undercurrent of that culture war? Because we don’t really talk about that all the time…
WALLACE: …but there is a raging, hot, culture war going on.
REID: 100 percent and Donald Trump channels it. Look, Donald Trump both resents Hollywood, remember…you know, when he got married the third time to Melania, his current wife, he wanted every celebrity to be there. Anna Wintour was there, you know, a lot of political celebrities like your Giulianis and Chris Christies were there too. But a lot of stars were there who, none of them…they disavow him now. None of them would probably admit to being there now but…
REID: …his third wedding was a star-studded affair, it was the achievement of his ultimate dreams.
REID: Donald Trump both resents Hollywood and the cultural elite and he craves them. He wants The New York Times to love him. He wants to be fetted in Hollywood. He wants to be, you know, he wants to be able to throw parties like Barack Obama used to do for, you know, the unveiling of a movie in the White House…
REID: …and have stars show up. He can’t.
REID: And he’s so angry, he’s so…
WALLACE: Netflix, baby.
REID: Exactly. He can’t do it. He , he has, he thought and I think in his mind if the black guy could get all of that by being elected President, well so should I and I should and I deserve it more than him. And I think that he shares his base’s resentment that the culture won’t come to them, that the culture won’t cater to them, that the movies aren’t about them, that they’re not the heroes in the American story. They want to be the center of attention again and Donald Trump says, you know what, I’ll make you the center of attention. You’re the center of my attention and I don’t give a damn about the brown people and I will hurt them for you. I will let you watch them get hurt. I will do a Roman coliseum for you and put little brown kids and abuelas in it so that you can see…and I’ll physically demonstrate that I’m your guy, not their guy and it’s not their country.
WALLACE: You know what’s amazing to me though about that analysis is that that’s enough for his base…
REID: 100 percent.
WALLACE: …it is not enough for Donald Trump.
WALLACE: He wakes up every morning completely, completely off his game; agitated, it would appear weeping in his pop tarts at a snarky story in The New York Times…
WALLACE: …at commentary from Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski here on MSNBC, at something that a, you know, soccer star or a basketball player said at him. If he was, so his base…and this is where, I think, his base is getting screwed. If he was happy with their love, and he has their love, no doubt…
REID: 100 percent.
WALLACE: …he wouldn’t be agitating for everybody else’s attention.
REID: Yeah, he can’t…
WALLACE: He would just be quiet and be happy…
WALLACE: …knowing, you know, I’m for you and you’re for me…kumbaya.
REID: Absolutely. He has their worship. You know, he has…
REID: …he has an almost religious following…
WALLACE: He doesn’t want it.
REID: He doesn’t want it. What he wants is that if Robert de Niro, tomorrow, would change his mind and call him…
REID: …he would be the happiest man on Earth.
REID: He wanted and craved Rupert Murdoch’s love but he got Roger Ailes. He couldn’t get even Rupert Murdoch to fall down in front of him. What he wants is to be part of the elite circle as he sees it because growing up, he’s the Queens rich guy who looked at the Manhattan rich and said I want to be with them and they were…looked at him like he was garbage. Like, they laughed at Donald Trump. Everybody here knew, if you talked, I have gone around the country, you talk to really rich people, they laugh at Donald Trump. They know he wasn’t a billionaire. They know it was all a joke and he knows it too. There’s a legitimacy crisis inside of him and there’s a bottomless pit of need inside of him and right now, it’s just being filled by his base because they worship him but he really wants the rest of us. He wants what Obama had and he can never have it and in his mind, it’s because Obama was black. It’s…he didn’t deserve it. He was the affirmative action President just like a lot of his base go “that job I should have gotten, that person got it because they were black.” Trump channels them utterly but he doesn’t even love them. He wants us and he can’t have us.
WALLACE: Well, that’s for sure. That’s for sure.
MICHAEL STEELE: I need a drink.
WALLACE: This book’s amazing. Congratulations.
REID: Thank you.
WALLACE: Congratulations. Really amazing.
REID: Thank you.
WALLACE: The book is called The Man Who Sold America. Go buy it if you haven’t already.