Fox News' Outnumbered show formed a pre-debate cheering squad to blunt conservative attacks on “exciting,” “inspiring” and “winner” Donald Trump.
Tonight’s Republican debate will probably feature more attacks on Trump from the other candidates than last month’s, Reuters notes. Furthermore, The New York Times reported yesterday that the conservative Club For Growth has targeted Trump’s conservative bona fides in a major ad campaign.
But Trump has got at least one group of Fox News hosts firmly on his side.
In a lengthy segment that looked more like a Trump pep rally than a “fair and balanced” news discussion, cohost Andrea Tantaros began by saying, “I’m not buying this whole faux conservative Trump thing.”
FAULKNER: You look at the faces of the people who were in that crowd. You know who they look like? Everybody. Everybody! It’s not just what kind of viewpoint he might have. …He’s a free thinker but you know what he is and this is what he has been selling that resonates more than anything else. He’s a winner! And that cuts across every political column! …That works for him.
Cohost Melissa Francis, of Fox Business Network, helped talk up Trump’s tax plan, which just happens to be one of the Club For Growth’s targets. She said she thinks people are “intentionally misinterpreting” it because they “aren’t listening to the details. She made a big deal out of pointing out that Trump told wealthy Bill O’Reilly last night that he’d pay less, therefore suggesting the rest of us would, too.
“It’s a very populist message that a lot of people in both parties don’t have the guts to deliver,” Tantaros added.
Faulkner murmured appreciatively.
Cohost Sandra Smith was the one kinda, sorta doubter. “It’s a simple message but everybody’s waiting for the real details on that tax plan,” she said. But she quickly got the pompoms out again as she brought up a new poll. “More and more Republicans seeing Donald Trump as their man,” she said enthusiastically. “This as the billionaire businessman was endorsed by the group Veterans for a Strong America who invited him to speak to a crowd of supporters on the battleship USS Iowa in Los Angeles.”
We saw a clip of Trump speaking to a cheering crowd, saying that he’s part of a movement that’s a “silent majority.”
Somehow, everybody forgot to mention that that veterans "group" consists of only one member.
“OK, so it is a movement, I’ll agree on that,” Smith said. “But could anything sink Donald Trump at this point?”
“Absolutely,” said the show’s #OneLuckyGuy, Republican Tony Sayegh, also a Fox News contributor. But he thought Trump might not only win the primary but the election.
That prompted Faulkner to urge Republicans to attack Hillary Clinton, not her man, Donald, at the debate tonight.
FAULKNER: Why won’t the establishment of the GOP, the RNC, Reince Priebus, why won’t they get behind Donald Trump? He’s the frontrunner. He is soaking up all the oxygen in the room and by the way, if he becomes too much a villain on the stage tonight, and they don’t focus on Hillary Clinton and the Democrats, that makes the Republican party look like they’re a little tone deaf. I mean, the competition really is across the aisle.
This is similar to the spiel Faulkner gave on behalf of Trump yesterday, too.
Faulkner later asked accusingly if Priebus had told other candidates besides Trump to “tone it down.” As if all the other candidates were as bombastic.
Francis gushed, “The Republicans finally have somebody who is dynamic, who is exciting, who is getting TV time, who is inspiring people and it feels like their goal is to stop him. They’re afraid of him.”
“Or make him seem like everybody else," Faulkner added." And by the way, we’re talking about whether or not you can sink him? He’s on a battleship! Reaching out to a thousand veterans. I don’t think he’s fettered at all.”
Francis giggled supportively.
Watch the Trump-ettes do their thing below, from the September 16 Outnumbered.