The interview of former President Donald Trump by Tucker Carlson, which was recorded prior to the August 23 Republican presidential candidates debate but debuted on X (formerly Twitter) at the same time as the debate, covered several topics of interest to all politically-minded people regardless of their thoughts concerning Trump.
WATCH: Tucker Carlson Interviews Donald Trump https://t.co/ICaltur4B9
— RedState (@RedState) August 24, 2023
The interview started with Trump explaining that he felt no need to attend the debate due to his significant lead in the polls. He added there were people there who, in his opinion, did not belong there, mentioning Asa Hutchinson and Chris Christie by name. He said Christie had asked him for a job in his administration, but Trump said no as he felt he could not trust him. Not mentioned was Ron DeSantis, although at the beginning of his explanation of why he was skipping the debate, he name-checked him with a “Ron DeSanctimonious” comment. Trump also put down FOX News and its former reporter, Chris Wallace, much to Carlson’s amusement.
Carlson’s next subject was Jeffrey Epstein. He asked Trump twice if he thought Epstein committed suicide or if someone murdered him. Both times, Trump declined to say one way or another, replying that it was possible murder was the case, but there was no way to be sure. Trump added that Bill Barr, who was Attorney General for a time under Trump, failed to properly investigate Epstein’s death much as he failed to properly investigate voter fraud charges in the 2020 presidential election.
Carlson asked Trump if he feared for his life, given how the order of activity against him has gone from protests to impeachment to indictments. Trump did not answer the question directly. He referred to the people leading the charge against him as “sick” and “animals,” yet immediately added he believed most Democrats are good people and his goal, if elected in 2024, is to be the President of all people. Trump also referred to the tremendous spirit he felt among his supporters in 2020.
Carlson broached the topic of foreign affairs. Trump decried the Russia-Ukraine War, stating that if he were still President, Vladimir Putin would have never invaded Ukraine. He added that the war had to stop, and if elected in 2024, he would bring about a swift conclusion.
Trump also discussed China and North Korea. He stated that during his time in office, he stopped a nuclear war with North Korea from happening. On China, Trump commented how it was now constructing military installations in Cuba and controls the Panama Canal. He added that China will promptly leave Cuba if he returns to office.
Trump severely criticized Joe Biden for his mental and physical feebleness. He wondered aloud if Biden will last long enough to run for re-election. Carlson asked who Trump thought might be the nominee if it isn’t Biden. Trump dismissed the possibility of Kamala Harris running, adding it was possible that Carlson’s suggestion of Gavin Newsom may be correct. Trump added the observation that a politician’s record was not as important to many voters as it once was, using Newsom as an example. His thought was since Newsom looks good, that was more important to a large bloc than the decaying status of California’s major cities, San Francisco and Los Angeles, under Newsom’s watch. Trump finished the thought by noting how Republican-led cities do not have these problems because they arrest criminals.
Trump and Carlson next had a lengthy discussion on government bureaucracy, specifically in environmental areas. Trump discussed how attempting to ban gasoline-powered vehicles and flow restrictors on water-using appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers both put American manufacturers at a disadvantage and unnecessarily handicapped consumers.
Near the interview’s end, Trump commented his first priority, if elected, will be sealing the southern border. He also mentioned January 6. Again, Trump deflected from answering Carlson’s question about whether he feared for his life. He was more forthcoming on whether he believed there was a possibility of civil war, stating that there is tremendous love and passion for the country running alongside tremendous anger at what has happened from 2020 on. Without directly saying if he believed civil way was coming, Trump added the combination of these three things was not good.
Tucker’s interview style was minimalistic, asking questions and allowing Trump full rein in response. While this may irritate those preferring a more confrontational style, it made Trump the center of attention, not Carlson. Whether the interview broke any new ground is a matter of opinion, but it allowed Trump to speak at length. Given how, at last check, the interview had over 79 million views on X (formerly Twitter), people want to hear what Donald Trump himself has to say as opposed to what others have to say about him.