Trump’s use of the “gotcha card” is wearing thin.
On Thursday afternoon (9/3/15), Donald Trump was a guest on Hugh Hewitt’s radio show where the subject of foreign policy and counterterrorism quickly became the main focus of the conversation.
Specifically, Hewitt asked Trump about how he would deal with General Qasem Soleimani, an Iranian military official with suspected ties to various terrorism groups in the Middle East, and the commander of The Quds Force which has aided the terrorist organization Hezbollah in various operations. Trump demonstrated to Hewitt that he has limited knowledge of who our most dangerous enemies are being led by fairly quickly.
Rather than admit to Hewitt that he still has some research to do on foreign policy, Trump immediately accused Hewitt of throwing him a “gotcha” question and then insisted that he will soon “know more about foreign-policy then you will ever know” in a condescending tone.
You can view the clip here:
Most political analysts and commentators would agree that Trump’s demeanor towards Hewitt was unprofessional to say the least. Must would also agree that Hewitt’s interview exposes a worrisome arrogance from Trump when it comes to foreign-policy (among other things) and this has caused many people to question Trump’s validity as a candidate even further.
However, the biggest question that has arisen from this interview is whether it or not the Trump campaign faces long-term problems in the future as a result? There are many out there who would say that the answer to this question is no because Hewitt is just one radio host with a relatively small audience in comparison to Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity.
Hewitt may have a smaller talk radio audience than some of the other big names but this doesn’t mean that his influence in political media is small as well. Hewitt may be best known for his afternoon/evening radio show as part of The Salem Radio Network, but many people either don’t know or forget that in addition to his job as a radio host, Hugh Hewett is also a nationally syndicated columnist, a regular contributor to various cable news shows, a professor of Constitutional Law at Chapman University, and a founding partner at his own law firm.
In addition to his already full plate in the political and legal world, Hewitt will also be one of the moderators in the second Republican presidential primary debate on September 16th. When one considers all of Hewitt’s credentials as a whole, there is little doubt in my mind that the man does in fact have a pretty large presence in American political commentary.
Yet the question still remains: Will this interview hurt the Trump Campaign?
I believe that it will in the long-term but not because of anything Hewitt said but rather because of Trump’s reaction and response to the questions he was given. This is the second time Trump has accused a pundit of forcing “gotcha” questions on him and unfortunately for him it’s looking like the general population is a lot more hesitant to agree with him this time.
One could successfully argue that Megan Kelley’s questions were specifically aimed at Trump, therefore making him a target. Hewitt on the other hand asked Trump questions that he has asked of several other candidates in the past. There were no questions during that interview that I felt were specifically aimed at discrediting Trump, but rather asking him important questions about national security that any candidate regardless of political affiliation should be able to answer.
On a last note, I’d like to remind people that Donald Trump has said multiple times that he wishes to be treated fairly and equally just like all the other candidates. Hugh Hewitt in my opinion fulfilled Trump’s wishes to a tee. Remember Donald, being treated equally does not exempt you from being scrutinized equally. If for some reason you can’t accept this, then it’s time to pack up and go home.
Sam Whitfield is the creator and host of The Whitfield Analysis, and an all around good guy! Conservative Journalist and Radio Host, Political Thriller Author #WARadioShow #tcot