MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle interviewed Stephen Cloobeck, "a big-time Democratic donor," on Thursday. At one point, she characterized Cloobeck, who is Chairman of Diamond resorts, as "in the middle," i.e., supposedly moderate. He sure didn't come across that way.
Cloobeck sounded like a lot of Republicans and conservatives have during at least the past 20 years — until quite recently.
Near the end of the interview, here's what the man said Democrats should do on February 8 when the latest continuing resolution expires:
STEPHANIE RUHLE: What do Democrats need to do, because they have lost leverage?
STEPHEN CLOOBECK: Shut the government down. Hold tight. Have brass balls.
There's your "moderate."
Cloobeck used the term "brass balls" three times during the interview. Ruhle used it twice.
In a later portion of the interview, Cloobeck expressed intense contempt for President Donald Trump, acting as if his party is a collection of reasonable people, unlike those Republican "bullies":
CLOOBECK: Look, President Trump is out of his mind. You know, his wife wants to take on bullying, she should work on him first. Because we don’t bully in the Democratic Party. But we need to be collective and get this done and have a set of brass balls. It’s the only way it’s going to work.
Democrats don't bully?
Earlier, Ruhle lamented how "Democrats seem to be eating their young ... saying Chuck Schumer blinked." Cloobeck's angry, uncompromising response appeared to admit that Barack Obama — consistent with what is known about the former President's post-White House actions — is orchestrating Democrats' resistance behind the scenes:
CLOOBECK: You know, the Republicans have balls. And the Democrats need to have brass balls now. And we as CEOs in business as Democrats have that. Let the government shut down. DREAMers have got to be taken care of 100 percent. You can’t let these kids go. If you want to talk about immigration, do it in the future. But let the DREAMers go. Same thing with CHIPs, they want to hold the kids accountable. That’s just asinine. I don’t know what is wrong with these folks.
RUHLE: But Steve, Democrats don’t do a good job making their case. Republicans bullied them, bullied them and say you’re choosing illegal immigrants over sick kids and then Democrats made a deal. Right now instead of continuing to fight with one another over what Chuck Schumer did, why not get together, have one unified voice and put the blame on Republicans?
CLOOBECK: I’ve talked to Senator Schumer. I’ve talked to Speaker Pelosi. And fortunately, I had a chance to speak with President Obama. And we’ve got to fight. Democrats don’t know how to fight. And I’m going to fight-fight-fight to make sure we fight.
Towards the interview's end, Ruhle said "We've got to toughen up." Though she might claim that she was only mirroring Cloobeck's words, it seems more likely that she's no longer worried about being seen as the blind partisan that she really is.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.