Trump Town Hall

One of my regular commenters on my YouTube channel left a post today saying he hopes I didn’t watch the CNN Trump town hall. I watched it.

First, I work for CNN so it’s not a very realistic hope. Second, why would I boycott a news event? How am I supposed to cover it if I don’t watch it? I’m a political cartoonist. I’m a journalist. I really don’t have much of a choice. Did I like it? No. Do I view it as a shitshow? Yes, I do. But avoiding unpleasant events doesn’t stop them from happening.

I don’t like that CNN gave Trump over an hour to air his lies and grievances, but I get what they’re doing here. Sure, it’s a ratings move but I also expect them to air town halls for other candidates. This is them attempting to be fair so keep that in mind when you scream “boycott.” If you’re on the left and you only want to be told what you want to hear, then watch MSNBC. In my view, MSNBC isn’t as much liberal as it is partisan. And if you want to scream that CNN is liberal, remember that they just gave Donald Trump over an hour to repeat his lies.

I have less outrage at CNN than sympathy for Kaitlan Collins, who hosted the event. Poor Kaitlan didn’t just have to deal with Trump and fact-check and debunk every lie he told, but she also had to deal with the MAGA audience. It was very much an away game for her. We can be unhappy that Trump got a larger venue than Truth Social to spout his lies, but at least they didn’t go unchallenged. Last night, Kaitlan Collins played better defense than Lawrence Taylor.

I believe the audience only got the opportunity to ask three or four questions as most of the time was spent on Trump’s lies. Either Trump was telling them or Kaitlan Collins was debunking them.

And anyone questioning President Biden’s cognitive ability needs to take note of Trump’s performance last night. As Frank Bruni wrote for The New York Times, on a scale of one to Marjorie Taylor Greene, Trump was an 11. Bruni’s piece is titled “Trump’s ‘Stupid,’ ‘Stupid’ Town Hall.”

Trump claimed that E. Jean Carroll, the woman a jury just gave $5 million to after ruling that Trump sexually abused and defamed her, once had a cat named “Vagina.” As if that proves his innocence because obviously, anyone who’s ever been raped or sexually assaulted wouldn’t want to mention the word “vagina” ever again. Right? Is that the logic we’re using here? Also, Trump claimed he never met or know anything about Carroll or even who she was, so how does he know what she named her cat? There are people I do know who have cats, and I can only think of one of the cats’ names, and that’s because I used to live with that cat. Hi Singe.

Trump claimed he finished building the racist border wall, which is a lie…and then said that President Biden could finish the border wall that he finished if he wanted to. What?

He blamed Nancy Pelosi for January 6, lied about ordering troops to defend the Capitol, and said it was a “beautiful day.” He called the black police officer who shot and killed one of his terrorists while defending the Capitol, a “thug.” He called Kaitlan Collins “nasty” for fact-checking all his lies.

He claimed he never asked the Georgia Secretary of State for votes even though there’s a recording of it. And then, he said that he told the state election official, “I said, “You owe me votes.'”

He defended stealing documents, claimed they were all automatically declassified, and that he could do whatever he wants with them, including showing them off to whoever he wanted. I hope Jack Smith was watching.

He claimed people in Washington, DC’s Chinatown don’t speak English. I’ve been to Chinatown in Washington. They speak English, and better than Trump.

Of course, he claimed again that the election was “rigged” and “stolen.” He brought copies of his tweets as if they were proof of anything other than him being a lunatic.

He said Putin made a mistake by invading Ukraine forgetting that he called Putin a “genius” the day after the invasion. He refused to pick a side between Russia and Ukraine and claimed he’ll end the war within 24 hours if he’s reelected (sic). He also claimed that Russia never would have invaded Ukraine if he was still president (sic) which is true because Russia would not have needed to. If Trump is reelected (sic), he will merely give Ukraine to Russia.

He kept using the word “stupid,” because, you know…his limited vocabulary.

Bruni wrote about CNN’s decision to give Trump this town hall, writing, “Its decision to give Trump this platform was widely attacked, but the network was correct to recognize that he is a relevant, potent political force who cannot be ignored and must be thoroughly vetted. Collins was clearly and rightly encouraged to challenge every false claim that he made, and she did precisely that, demonstrating great knowledge and preternatural poise.”

What Bruni did criticize CNN for was allowing such a heavily pro-Trump crowd into the room and described their questions perfectly as “air kisses” to Trump. The audience laughed at everything they said, from his lies to his mocking E. Jean Carroll’s claims, to calling Collins “nasty.” Whee, he’s so funny. But then again, Greg Gutfeld is a Republican’s idea of a comedian.

What’s truly scary is that a poll taken by The Washington Post and ABC News last week gave Trump a six-point lead over President Biden and found that voters deem Trump, 76, more physically and mentally fit for the presidency than Biden, 80. In 2016, polled voters believed Hillary Clinton was less honest than Donald Trump.

And with that, I have less anger at CNN than I do at a lot of American voters.

CNN CEO Chris Licht justified the network providing Trump a town hall in an internal call with staffers. He said, “There is so much that we learned last night about what a second Trump presidency would look like, that that is incredibly important for the country to hear. That is our job, to get those answers and to hold them accountable in a way that no news organization has done in literally years. We all know covering Donald Trump is messy and tricky, and it will continue to be messy and tricky. But it’s our job, and we’re going to do it fairly, toughly, and aggressively, as Kaitlan did last night.”

Politico quoted one anonymous CNN staffer who was upset with the network. He or she said it was a “complete disaster” and said “stacking the audience” with Trump supporters who cheered his lies was a “strategic error.” The employee said, “It made it seem like CNN was endorsing that behavior.”

CNN’s media reporter, Oliver Darcy, wrote, “It’s hard to see how America was served by the spectacle of lies that aired on CNN Wednesday evening.” and, “It felt like 2016 all over again.”

CNN contributor and former Capitol Police officer Michael Fanone criticized the network before the event in a piece for Rolling Stone titled, “CNN is hosting a town hall for a guy who tried to get me killed.”

After the event, he told HuffPost that he was “appalled” by what he saw and that it was “an absolute disaster.”

Fanone also said, “There’s no way to fact-check this guy in real time. He’s a volcano of bullshit.”

Creative note: I drew this Thursday night…right after I drew another on the same subject. I thought of this idea about a minute after I finished the first one. I knew this was better so I put the first one aside and drew this. You may see the other in a week. It’s on the same subject with a similar layout, but the idea is totally different.

Music note: I listened to Third Eye Blind.

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Notes on my book, Tales From The Trumpster Fire: There are 19 copies of my book in stock, which go for $45.00 each, signed. Also, I have copies of my first book from 1997, Knee-Deep in Mississippi available for $20.00.

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  1. I worked with a guy who called his cat Penis because, his words, he could walk around his block at night shouting out for his lost Penis. He was not a responsible pet ownner. He probably loves Trump now too!
    It does not matter if Licht was right or wrong to give Trump a platform. It’s over now, and his decision is the talk of a nation. He got what he wanted, publicity! But if Trump gets reelected after this (sick) Licht is going to take a lot of blame! And if Trump is defeated, he can take no accolades. Most of those voting for the Democratic nominee were going to do that anyway. If people vote against Trump it is because Trump is an asshole loser, for which he himself is completely at fault. Trump loves being an asshole!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. CNN’s logic implies that America doesn’t know who and what IQ45 is. WE KNOW! Fairness would have been having Pete Buttigieg questioning and fact checking him. I found it hilarious that he supports (encourages McCarthy and MAGAt’s) a policy to not increase the debt ceiling, thus throwing our country into “chaos” (quoting only every economist ever). I would guess that a vast majority of his devotees would suffer the most were this to occur but applaud wildly they did! Trumpfuckery is truly alive and flourishing in these semi-United States.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Just wanted to say that when I heard that Dumph was advocating defaulting instead of raising the debt ceiling I couldn’t help thinking that Almost 8 trillion of that money was wasted by Dumph while he was pretending to be president.

      Liked by 1 person

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