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We should have seen it coming.

When Megyn Kelly told the New York Times a few days ago that her marquee interview with the closest thing we’ve had to an authoritarian president “doesn’t all have to be A-plus level[s] of difficulty,” and “I love covering the news, but I’m not a political person,” we should have seen it coming.

And frankly, we had it coming: If Donald Trump is the pinnacle of American entertainment, political or not, then the job of the cable news media, political or not, is to step out of his way, feeding on his crumbs, as Jon Stewart recently described it, like a remora trailing a shark.

And that’s what happened last night, in soft-lit conference room in Trump Tower. Donald live-tweeted the recorded event, for some reason. Perhaps because he made a deal with Fox. Perhaps because it was more compelling.

“I look forward to watching  tonight, 8 PM ET. It will be interesting to see how she treats me—I think she will be very fair,” he tweeted — after the interview had taken place.

It was a fawning, gauzy thing, broadcast to keep the Trump mob happy, to keep the lights on at Fox, and to set up Kelly, whose contract is set to expire soon, for a cushy celebrity interview gig, where she doesn’t have to think about Donald Trump or integrity ever again, even after the cattle cars start on their way down to Mexico. The camera cut directly from Trump’s last answer to Kelly hawking her upcoming book, Settle for More.

Not that Trump could ever manage “opening up,” emotionally, no matter how hard Kelly tried to evoke some sense of regret or introspection about his sicking a million man internet mob on his every enemy. Trump said he didn’t “think it was healthy” to apologize for making fun of John McCain, Carly Fiorina, Heidi Cruz — or Megyn Kelly. “Bimbo?” she asked, when he said he hadn’t retweeted “the more nasty ones.” “Ooh, okay, excuse me,” Trump blushed, without apologizing, “Over your life, Megyn, you’ve been called a lot worse.”

Watch the whole thing, if you want. The actual interview only took 15 minutes. It will be required viewing on January 21st.

 

Photo and video: Fox/ Megyn Kelly

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Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Doug Mastriano

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Doug Mastriano is a QAnon conspiracy theorist and January 6 insurrectionist who this week won the Republican nomination for Pennsylvania governor. Mastriano is also anti-Muslim: He previously shared an image with the words, “Stop Islam” and a post claiming that “the American People have a right to be fearful of the prospect of a large number of muslims being elected to congress, specifically if they practice Sharia law.”

In addition to running for governor, Mastriano is a Pennsylvania state senator, a right-wing commentator, and a frequent guest in right-wing media. He regularly pushes lies about the 2020 election being stolen from former President Donald Trump.

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