A week into the job, incoming White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci has compared the repeal of the Affordable Care Act to the abolition of slavery, his relationship with White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus to that of Cain and Abel, and Jared Kushner to Alexander Hamilton. But Scaramucci had been making dumb comparisons long before getting the job.
The GOP’s attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act are like Lincoln’s efforts to abolish slavery. In his first U.K. television interview, incoming White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci likened the Trump administration’s failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act with Abraham Lincoln’s struggle for “the full abolition of slavery.” From the July 26 report in The Guardian:
The new head of communications at the White House brought up Abraham Lincoln’s struggle to end slavery when asked about the difficulty [President] Donald Trump has faced in trying to repeal Barack Obama’s healthcare legislation.
In his first UK television interview, Anthony Scaramucci said Trump would push through the abolition of the healthcare plan, despite opposition in Congress.
He told BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis: “If you’ve read Team of Rivals, it took Lincoln three or four times to get what he wanted from the Senate and the House of Representatives, which was the full abolition of slavery – that was a much tougher thing to get done than what we’re working on right now.” [The Guardian, 7/26/17]
White House staff should “act with honor and dignity and respect” like Joe Paterno. In an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, Scaramucci cited former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno -- who was fired after being accused of covering up a child sex-abuse scandal that involved his assistant coach -- to make an argument about the “honor of the job” in handling information at the White House. From the July 27 Washington Post report:
“Why don’t you honor the job?” Scaramucci told “New Day” anchor Chris Cuomo. “Remember Joe Paterno? What would he say? Act like you’ve been there before. Act with honor and dignity and respect and hold the confidence of the presidency and his office.” [The Washington Post, 7/27/17]
His relationship with Reince Priebus might be like that of Cain and Abel. Scaramucci pointed to the biblical brothers Cain and Abel -- one of whom murdered the other -- while describing his relationship with White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. He said, “If you want to talk about the chief of staff, we have had odds, we have had differences. When I said we were brothers, from the podium, that's because we're rough on each other. Some brothers are like Cain and Abel, other brothers can fight with each other and then get along. I don't know if this is repairable or not — that will be up to the president." [The Washington Post, 7/27/17]
Trump not committing to defending allies in NATO speech is like Reagan’s Berlin wall speech. During an interview with MSNBC’s Stephanie Ruhle, Scaramucci compared Trump’s failure to mention Article 5 of NATO’s treaty -- the collective defense clause -- during his speech at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, to Ronald Reagan’s call to Russian leader Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin wall. From the June 9 report in Talking Points Memo:
“Why would the President have taken Article 5 out of his NATO speech, and surprised those around him, members of his NSA team, who thought that was in there?” Ruhle asked.
Scaramucci, who served on Trump’s presidential transition team’s executive committee, called the omission a “Reaganesque sort of thing.”
“It’s the same reason why Ronald Reagan left in ‘Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall,’” he said. “I think the President’s trying to send a message to our fellow allies that you’ve been under, as it relates to your national defense expenditures, particularly Germany is at, like, 1.2 percent, when they signed a contract that they would be at 2 [percent].” [Talking Points Memo, 6/9/17]
A financial regulation is “about like the Dred Scott decision.” In October, Scaramucci likened a regulation that requires financial advisers to act in the best interest of their clients to the Dred Scott ruling, a 1857 Supreme Court decision that black people couldn’t have American citizenship. According to Slate, Scaramucci said he made the comparison “because he views the [regulation] as discriminatory.” [Slate, 7/21/17]
Consensus on climate change is like the view that the earth is flat. According to a July 21 Business Insider report, Scaramucci once “compared the consensus on climate change to the belief that the world was flat”:
In a December 2016 interview on CNN, Anthony Scaramucci — the new White House communications director — compared the consensus on climate change to the belief that the world was flat, Slate reported at the time.
“I know that the current president believes that the human beings are affecting the climate. There are scientists that believe that that's not happening,” Scaramucci said.
When CNN anchor Chris Cuomo pointed that the “overwhelming consensus in the scientific community” is that humans are driving climate change, Scaramucci said people also once accepted the idea that the Earth was flat.
“Chris, there was an overwhelming science that the Earth was flat and there was an overwhelming science that we were the center of the world. One hundred percent. We get a lot of things wrong in the scientific community,” Scaramucci said.
Cuomo talked over him: “It's called ignorance,” he said. “You learn over time.”
Scaramucci responded: “I'm not suggesting we’re not affecting the change, I honestly don't know. I'm not a scientist. If you're asking for my opinion.”
“I’m not,” Cuomo said. [Business Insider, 7/21/17]
Jared Kushner is like Alexander Hamilton. On April 10, The Daily Beast reported that Scaramucci compared Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner to founding father Alexander Hamilton during an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo because “He’s got the trust of the president. He’s very very thoughtful. He knows how to bring people in … that was Hamilton's great gift at a very young age.” Cuomo pointed out Kushner is “nothing like Alexander Hamilton”:
President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner is like one of America’s most famous founding fathers, according to another Trump adviser. “I think he is like Alexander Hamilton,” Anthony Scaramucci said Kushner on CNN Monday. “He is a young man who has a tremendous amount of maturity.” CNN anchor Chris Cuomo skeptically pushed back, asking, “What do you mean he’s like Alexander Hamilton? He’s nothing like Alexander Hamilton.” Scaramucci’s response: “He’s got the trust of the president. He’s very, very thoughtful. He knows how to bring people in… that was Hamilton's great gift at a very young age.” [The Daily Beast, 4/10/17]
The mainstream media is like the Soviet state-run newspaper Pravda. During a guest appearance on Fox News’ Hannity, Scaramucci compared the mainstream media to Pravda, former Soviet Union state-run newspaper. Scaramucci argued that “The mainstream media is now an organized member of the state” and that they had launched a “coordinated attack” against Trump, “prosecuting the way ‘Pravda’ used to do for the Soviet Union.” From the October 4 edition of Fox News’ Hannity:
SEAN HANNITY (HOST): The Clintons, they used every tax deduction. In 2015, they claimed a $699,000 loss.
ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI: But again, the real issue is that what used to be called the fourth estate, Sean, is now part of the state. The mainstream media is now an organized member of the state, prosecuting the way “Pravda” used to do for the Soviet Union. It's a coordinated attack.
HANNITY: It's true. It's illegal. And the same -- they wouldn't publish the global warming papers that came out on global warming gate, Eric, so --
HANNITY: They made a big assumption here. And by the way, they used the tax code over at the The New York Times, but the net loss carried forward would have been in 95 to, what, 2010. We don’t know.
SCARAMUCCI: You get three years prior and then 15 years forward. That's where the 18 years comes from. But listen, Judge Learned Hand, Oliver Wendell Holmes, they've all said the same thing, famous, famous cases, saying, Sean, you don't have to pay any more than what's -- you have to legally -- than what’s allowable inside the IRS code. That's all Mr. Trump has done.
HANNITY: Otherwise he’d be in jail.
SCARAMUCCI: Of course. It's a free enterprise system and they're trying to thwart that as well. [Fox News, Hannity, 10/3/16]