Good news for John
McCain Stewart! Dave Weigel brings news of the Great Trump Debate:
It’s all true. Newsmax, the magazine whose Ron Kessler more or less magicked the Donald Trump presidential boomlet out of thin air, has booked Trump to moderate a debate in Iowa on December 27, to be “broadcast on the cable network Ion Television.”
Who’s going to kiss the ring of a guy best known in national politics for telling lies about Barack Obama’s citizenship? Not clear yet. Newsmax’s Christopher Ruddy tells me there’ll be “news next week” about the attendees. Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul is diplomatic but non-committal: “We just received the invitation, and we’re taking a look at it.” But two high-minded candidates who have struggled for traction have already said they’re out. Tim Miller, spokesman for Jon Huntsman, typed out “LOL” when I asked about the debate.
“We look forward to watching Mitt and Newt suck-up to The Donald with a big bowl of popcorn,” said Miller. (Huntsman, on Twitter on elsewhere, has tweaked the other candidates for traveling to New York for secretive meetings with the celebrity TV host/builder of ugly hotels.)
I asked Buddy Roemer, the former governor of Louisiana who’s unexpectedly become a gadfly candidate, whether he’d show up for the debate. It would be his first.
“Yes,” he said, “driving a clown car with a bumper sticker that reads, ‘Really people? Is this what the debates have come to!?'”
Probably not a coincidence that Newsmax announced this, at least to the “secular” media, on a Friday afternoon. The NYTimes post is a Grey Lady, Very-Serious-Persons masterpiece in its own right: “But despite being derided by liberals – President Obama likened Mr. Trump to a “carnival barker” for his repeated assertions that the president was actually foreign-born – the real estate mogul carries weight with a certain element of the conservative base… Newsmax is a powerful player itself. It has a broad reach into the conservative base, with monthly Web traffic second only to Fox News among sites with conservative-leaning audiences… “
Let me state for the record: Thank goddess I’ve retained my amateur status, because there is not enough money in the world to pay me to liveblog that particular debate.