Former CNBC host Donny Deutsch is no fan of Donald Trump.
But that fact makes his rare moment of praise for the president even more surprising.
A regular critic of Trump’s, Deutsch told MSNBC host Joe Scarborough that the president’s tough talk on North Korea this week is “needed at this point.”
“You know, nobody has been more critical of Trump,” Deutsch said on “Morning Joe” on Friday. “I didn’t have a huge problem with what he did, to tell you the truth.”
While others blasted the president’s rhetoric as inflammatory and irresponsible, Deutsch came to Trump’s defense, telling Scarborough that he was “dancing around” giving the president his due credit.
“We have a leader in North Korea whose only objective is to stay in power. He doesn’t want to blow himself,” Deutsch said.
“I actually think that rhetoric was kind of needed at this point. Nobody’s been more critical of this guy,” he continued, cautioning that his view would probably not be popular among liberals. “I and a lot of people I talk to also — and this is not going to do well for me in the Hamptons this weekend — under their breath were saying ‘you know what, maybe that needed to be said.'”
The words and tone seemed uncharacteristic for Deutsch, who has name-called Trump and even once challenged him to a fight. Even Scarborough seemed at a momentary loss for how to react, eventually turning to joke about never going to the Hamptons because he is a “man of the people right now in Middle America.”
“But I will tell you that I have been shocked by people in Middle America, hearing people saying the same thing,” Scarborough added.
“Yes, they are frightened by the rhetoric. But at the same time then they say, ‘Well, you know what? What the hell did Bill Clinton, George Bush, and Barack Obama do?'” Scarborough said. “We haven’t been standing up to the Chinese for 30 years.”
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