Former Republican congressman Joe Walsh desperately wants to be seen as a serious primary challenger to President Trump, but he’s finding out that the bigger opponent he faces is his own hypocrisy.
A rabid member of the Never Trump cabal, the one-term former lawmaker is getting plenty of earned media being a Republican willing to bash Trump, but his past keeps getting in the way, as seen in a recent appearance on HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher.”
Walsh was cheered by the liberal audience when introduced, but Maher set the tone right away when he said, “Apparently, they don’t know your history, Joe.”
Maher was clear that Walsh was going to lose against Trump, but his guest pushed back.
“Oh, I’ve got a shot,” he insisted, prompting Maher to say, “Oh, stop it!”
This led to a Kumbaya moment where long-shot Democratic presidential candidate John Delaney, another guest on the show, and Walsh joined hands in their quest to defeat the Republican president.
Maher would then use Walsh, who doesn’t have a chance of prevailing against Trump, as a willing tool to dismantle the right in America, to paint conservatives as a bunch of whack jobs.
“You don’t like that he lies. You don’t like that he’s a traitor. Little things,” Maher joked. “But let’s just go down the list and see how much in line you [are].”
Getting Walsh on record in supporting some things about the president, Maher then went in for the kill.
“You were a leader of the anti-Obama nutcase caucus,” he said.
His hapless prey was more than willing to play the stooge.
“Yes, I helped lead to Trump,” Walsh confessed. “Look at me, I helped put Donald Trump [in office] — well, it’s true.”
Maher gave him a pat on the back for unburdening himself before the liberal gods of pop culture.
“Two things led to Trump: A weak, feckless Republican Party that was out of touch with where their voters were and people like me, who let our rhetoric get ahead of us,” Walsh added.
Well aware of the crowd’s bias against the president, Walsh would then pivot to his bread and butter, the one thing that assures him of relevance: bashing Trump.
“This thing has nothing to do with issues,” Walsh said. “Donald Trump is a horrible human being. Period.”
The remark drew applause from the audience, but Maher again noted that there are many things that Walsh supports that the crowd would not be too happy with.
“Here’s the point. I am a Republican. I am a conservative Republican,” Walsh said. “I do not and will not lie every time I open my mouth.”
He then threw out more red meat for the room.
“For the first time in our history, we have a president who lies virtually every time he talks,” Walsh said. “And we have a president incapable of thinking about anybody but himself.”
While the attack earned Maher’s approval, it’s precisely what the host was alluding to earlier when he mentioned Walsh’s past beliefs and comments.
And Maher went right back to it, using Walsh to push the left’s false narrative that the tea party was a racist movement.
“You sent out 4,000 tweets, some of them were racist but you’re not a racist,” Maher said of a recent admission from Walsh. “A fine distinction to make.”
And the leftist comedian was just getting warmed up.
“Just look me in the eye and tell me that the seething, frothing hatred that I remember that you had for Barack Obama had nothing to do with the fact that he was black,” he added.
“Gosh, no,” Walsh insisted, as the audience groaned in disbelief. “His policies.”
With Walsh setting himself up as the perfect mark, Maher would go on to mock the tea party movement as a failure, with his guest too dense to understand that he was being played for a stooge.
This being the kind of judgement that Walsh offers — a point Maher drove home in the end as an excuse to bash Trump.
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