DM: That’s where I’m trying to see from your point of view. In Long Island, you’ll meet people that love Trump and hate him not even a mile apart.
AS: You’ll see the interaction. Guys that are in the real estate industry don’t like him. I’m trying to give you a balanced perspective. Guys in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and I’m trying to be more observational than political, there was a 35-year vacuum of middle-class and lower middle-class advocacy from the office of the presidency.
For whatever reason, Democrats decided that because some dolphin choked on a straw we’re going to have paper straws, the ice cubes are melting in the North Pole, so we’re going to focus on global warming. We’re going to have transgender bathrooms and you have to speak in a very politically correct way because you could lose your job…
While they’re working on that, these middle-class people and lower middle-class people are being devastated and feeling left out by the forces of globalization, automation, and all of that stuff. It will take 25 years of good policy to cure the problems of the middle and lower middle-class. The president can do things like de-layer regulations, adjust the administrative state, he can put a tax cut in place that will hopefully lead to some reinvestment, but we both know that a lot of these manufacturing jobs are not coming back because they’ve been replaced by robotic technology.
DM: He has detractors who call him a narcissist, say he hasn’t done a middle-class tax cut, trickle-down economics doesn’t work. Are they right? Is there anything that you hear and say, ‘That’s a valid criticism’?
AS: I’m not an apologist, I’m my own guy. One reason I couldn’t stick it in Washington is because I won’t stand up there like Sean Spicer and say there was more people at the inaugural event than there was. I’m not doing that.
.@flacqua: "Was Trump right — could he shoot someone on 5th Avenue and still get away with it?"
— Bloomberg TV (@BloombergTV) October 25, 2018
DM: So that’s one thing you thought he wasn’t telling the truth on?
AS: It’s f**king ridiculous. I wrote in the book Spicer’s nickname was ‘Liar Spice,’ like in the Spice Girls. You can’t do that. The president actually agreed with me.
He likes diversionary tactics. If he tells 10 lies and can get Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo to be hall monitors, microanalyzing his lies and fact checking him, he’s winning. That’s Trump’s personality, because he then has everyone galvanizing on a non-issue to his base.
Those people would be better served saying ‘Wait a minute, there was a 35-year vacuum of advocacy for these people.’ Whether the president’s policies are working or not, we can debate that over the next 10 years, but what is working for those people is that they finally have someone in the White House they feel hasn’t forgotten them. In the Trump world, they are no longer the forgotten man and woman.
My recommendation to the Democrats is to stop fact checking him and acting morally outraged and instead focus on the middle and lower middle-class. Then you’ll have a fight in 2020. If you don’t do that, he’s going to kill you.