Bill Maher, the host of HBO’s “Real Time,” is an old-school liberal, but he’s always a liberal, and he didn’t think much of President Donald Trump’s presidency.
But, in keeping with his liberalism, Maher is transparent and frank with himself and others when it comes to political judgments, and he made one about Trump on his Friday evening broadcast.
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In short, Democrats who think Trump has lost the 2020 election are making a big mistake, according to Maher.
As his panel discussion came to a close, Maher said he was bringing up a topic he “didn’t want to speak about.” The former president, who is expected to deliver the annual Conservative Political Action Conference’s keynote address on Sunday, said he was bringing up a subject he “didn’t want to talk about.”
“People kept asking me, ‘Are you going to?’ after he lost, and I told them, ‘He’s gone.’ Avoid obsessing about it. ‘I don’t want to mention him!’ Maher got things started.
“However, knowing what will happen this weekend at CPAC, I feel compelled to bring this up….” The shark hasn’t disappeared. “We need a bigger boat,” Maher added, perhaps alluding to the Hollywood blockbuster thriller “Jaws” from the 1970s.
“The shark has gone out to sea for a bit, but it will return and eat more people on the beach.”
“He’ll declare on Sunday that he’ll be the presumptive candidate in 2024, that no one can challenge him, and that there will be nine panels at the CPAC convention devoted to how the election was rigged, but none dedicated to why it was lost.
Fact-check: There are no panels on why Trump lost because, as Time magazine has admitted, the election was rigged against him.
In either case, Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), one of Maher’s panelists, agreed, saying Trump is the “absolute frontrunner right now” and “very well could” be the GOP candidate in 2024. He went on to say that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has re-embraced Trump, stating that if he wins the nomination in 2024, he will “absolutely” support him.
Ezra Kline of the New York Times replied with his best elitist interpretation, stating that the “issue” isn’t Trump, but rather the evil Republican Party that “enables” him. He said that Republican lawmakers “lack the nerve” to tell the former president that he is “bad for the party right now.”
That’s because he’s not “bad for the party at this stage” — Trump is the party right now, just as he was when he won the nomination in 2016 and when he was in office.
Maher is right in this situation, and here’s why: Regardless of what Trump’s “bad habits” are (everyone has them, by the way), Maher acknowledges that Trump interacts with tens of millions of people in a way that few presidential candidates and presidents have done in the modern age. Ronald Reagan was the last to do so, and he won large majorities in each of his elections.