NEW YORK CITY — Jeffrey Lord says Donald Trump is a little like nearly every great political figure over the past 200 years.
The CNN commentator explained why Trump is like Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, Winston Churchill and Barry Goldwater in the latest episode of “The Jamie Weinstein Show” podcast, while also discussing the #NeverTrump movement, his role as a CNN commentator and much more.
- How his love affair with Donald Trump began (3:25)
- His initial thoughts when Trump entered the presidential race (13:54)
- Why Trump has some similarities to Winston Churchill (18:42)
- Lord attempts to rebut the #NeverTrump case against The Donald (24:10)
- How he got his job at CNN and how he sees his role (35:18)
- How the media have covered Trump (47:19)
- On what happens if Trump loses to the GOP (51:50)
- On disagreeing without being disagreeable (59:52)
- On his influences (1:03:37)
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“In terms of the enemies he has, in terms of the Republican establishment, I mean I was there, the Republican establishment of the day couldn’t stand Ronald Reagan,” Lord said, explaining how Trump reminds of him of The Gipper, even while conceding “no two human souls are alike.”
“I went back and took a look at all the remarks by people like Nelson Rockefeller and Charles Percy and Gerald Ford, all these people that said of Ronald Reagan, ‘Well, if he ever got nominated, it would be the end of the Republican Party as we know it,’ ‘that he’s not very smart,’ ‘that’s he’s an extremist,'” Lord continued. “All of these terrible things about Ronald Reagan. And you know now they all treat him like a little god and hold him up. Those kind of things from the same kind of people, if in some cases not the same people, were being said about Donald Trump.”
When asked about Trump’s vulgarity, Lord compared Trump to Abraham Lincoln.
“I went back and took a look, Jamie, at what they said, what associates of Abraham Lincoln said in the day and they said among other things that he was vulgar, that he was gross, that he told these terrible jokes, and that he had no class, all this kind of thing,” Lord said. “And the guy’s got a whole monument to himself on The Mall in Washington. I just think that kind of stuff — that particular criticism drives me nuts because that’s the essence of Country Club Republicanism that I think should just be banished until the ends of the earth.”
Asked what will Trump do if he loses the election, Lord said he would be a little bit like Reagan and Barry Goldwater.
“I think he becomes the leader of a movement, not unlike Barry Goldwater was once upon a time or Ronald Reagan himself after he lost that election — that he represents a movement,” Lord explained. “And the question is going to be are you there or are you still #NeverTrump or, you know, and this will reformulate itself.”
When asked if he also sees a little Winston Churchill in Trump, Lord said that, in fact, he did.
“Where I see it is this, is that he is willing to call, as they say, a spade a spade — and Churchill was just this wonderful character with these mammoth flaws,” Lord argued. “But boy, when he was right, he was spot on right. When you’re thinking as we’re talking now about all of this email stuff and the FBI and all, there’s Donald Trump back in August saying, ‘I don’t like the fact that Huma goes home to Anthony Weiner. I mean, who knows what he sees on his computer?’ I mean, he goes through this whole thing. Well now we’re finding out that is exactly the kind of thing.”
“I think he has to some degree an unerring sense of what’s going on” like Churchill, Lord went on.
Not surprisingly, given his unending flacking for Donald Trump, Lord said Reagan, Churchill and Lincoln were among his favorite historical figures. Asked if Donald Trump would soon join that list, Lord replied, “And Donald Trump, yeah, yeah.”
“He’s still a work in progress, as are all candidates,” he added.