Donald Trump kept his word tonight, hosting his own charity event for veterans at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa – instead of appearing across town at the Fox News-Google Republican debate.
The past 48 hours of the news cycle have been dominated by the repercussions of Trump’s decision to skip the final debate before the Iowa caucuses. What has been carelessly reported by mainstream (and even ‘conservative’) media as Trump’s ‘fear’ of Fox News diva Megyn Kelly, has turned out to be a much more complicated, multi-layered story – as with most misreporting since the beginning of his campaign.
Trump made it clear that he had no desire to serve as a lucrative whipping boy for the Fox moderators. In keeping with the same requests he has made of CNN since September, the real estate titan requested Fox donate $5,000,000 of proceeds to veterans’ charities – the network refused. Instead, they chose to release a scornful, unprofessional anonymous statement taunting Mr. Trump.
“We learned from a secret back channel that the Ayatollah and Putin both intend to treat Donald Trump unfairly when they meet with him if he becomes president — a nefarious source tells us that Trump has his own secret plan to replace the Cabinet with his Twitter followers to see if he should even go to those meetings.”
It should be noted that Trump has been highly commended by Mr. Putin as the “absolute leader of the presidential race” and a “very bright and talented man.” Additionally, a candidate consulting directly with his supporters about a crucial decision at this critical junction in his campaign is not only refreshing, but may portend to a similar style of leadership should he take the reins of the nation.
It also came to light that Fox-Google had lined up multiple ambushes for Trump, in the forms of YouTube personalities known for their illegal immigration to the U.S., Islamic activism, support for the Black Lives Matter mob, and love for Bernie Sanders. Clearly, the agenda was to focus spiteful heat rays at Trump, and he wasn’t having any of it. Instead, Senator Ted Cruz took the brunt of the abuse from the activist moderators – and even threatened to leave the debate himself.
The bad joke is on Fox, as they undoubtedly suffered diminished ratings, lost another horde of once-loyal viewers, and may have experienced a massive hit in the wallet. Rush Limbaugh divulged on his radio show that inside sources informed him Fox’s advertising rate could possibly drop from $750,000 per slot to $150,000 after Trump’s departure.
Reports of Fox CEO, Roger Ailes, calling Trump, his daughter, Ivanka, and his wife, Melania, to beg for reconsideration were compounded by the spectacle of network all-star, Bill O’Reilly, openly pleading with Trump to change his mind, while promising to buy him a ‘vanilla milkshake.’
During the pre-game show, O’Reilly was admonished for his amateurish groveling by commentator Bernie Goldberg, who stated, “One of the reasons Donald Trump is successful is that he doesn’t care what anybody thinks, and last night he proved it. He doesn’t even care what YOU think… The milkshakes didn’t matter. The cajoling, the beseeching – none of that mattered.”
Sans hair extensions, Megyn Kelly – who spent Tuesday evening giggling and Trump-bashing with fellow elitist, Michael Moore – came out of the gates with two questions for Ted Cruz about – you guessed it – The Donald. Mr. Trump was mentioned in 5 out of the first 6 questions and answers.
Over at Drake University, viral sensations Diamond and Silk were ‘stumping for Trump,’ and firing up a packed house. Thousands had waited in the cold to take part in an event less than 24 hours in the making – during which time, more than $6,000,000 was raised for a variety of veterans’ organizations and charities. Trump personally contributed $1,000,000.
The 90 minute assembly played out generally how Trump’s now-legendary campaign rallies do, but with a heavy emphasis on honoring veterans and military personnel. Decorated Green Beret sniper, John Wayne Walding, was given a lengthy time to address the crowd about his personal story, and the sacrifices of his fellows soldiers.
As IndyStar reports, “Walding, a Green Beret who had previously served a tour in Iraq, lost the lower part of a leg after being shot by a sniper during a mission to capture a high-value target in the Shok Valley area of Afghanistan on April 6, 2008. Walding tied his severed leg to his thigh and continued to return fire for four hours before the Green Berets were rescued.”
Trump, who has been criticized for his assertion of being ‘militaristic’ by non-interventionists, stated clearly that he would ensure the United States has the “biggest, most powerful military” as a defensive deterrent. “We’re never going to have to use it,” he propounded.
Interestingly, fellow presidential hopefuls Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum arrived immediately following their participation in the ‘under-card’ GOP debate, to take part in Trump’s fundraiser. There was genuine, sincere respect amongst the three men, with Huckabee graciously remarking of Trump, “It says something about him that he would have us here.” Huckabee also insinuated that all candidates had been invited and welcomed to the gathering.
Trump’s resolute decision to go rogue has been roundly criticized and pooh-poohed by critics and back-biters. Tomorrow’s ratings and polls will reveal many of the implications of his gambit. At minimum, the faux-conservative veneer behind which Fox News hides the breadth of their full agenda has been damaged. Alternative media smells blood in the water, and has been working hard to expose head honcho Rupert Murdoch’s open borders obsession.
After one hour of simultaneous broadcasting, a Drudge/Conservative Outfitters poll revealed that 59% of participants were watching the Trump assembly, with only 41% viewing the GOP debate.
“When America says ‘Thank you,’ I say, ‘You’re worth it.'” – John Wayne Walding, Green Beret, 01.28.16