Morning Joe Panel Claims Trump Made Campaign "Mistakes" Because He's "Exhausted" From Being "On Television Constantly"
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From the April 4 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe:
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JOE SCARBOROUGH (CO-HOST): I want to follow up with this report that everybody close to him, and he has suggested in this interview with Maureen Dowd, everybody is wanting him to be more presidential. Everyone wants him to be more restrained. Everyone wants him to stop doing 20 interviews a day and become much more disciplined with his message. Does he have that in him? Because if he doesn't he's just going to keep doing worse and worse.
JOHN HEILEMANN: There's a -- I think it's true of all candidates that you get late into the cycle, and you see this in every presidential election, late in the cycle, the months of campaigning start to wear on people. They're tired in general, and in order to not make mistakes, they need to be more cautious.
SCARBOROUGH: He should do less.
HEILEMANN: And you need to do less. And so if you're on television constantly -- you guys have some understanding of this -- if you're on television constantly day after day after day, month after month, you're going to start to make mistakes. And Trump has obviously made many mistakes over the course of this campaign, or what we consider mistakes. They're starting to pile up, and now they're at least on the subject of women, they can have significant electoral consequences that may not be fixable.
SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, and, again, you get on TV and you're exhausted.
SCARBOROUGH: That's when the mistakes pile up.
ELISE JORDAN: I think he's addicted to the drug of TV, though, on some level. And that's what he keeps coming over. He can't stop.
SCARBOROUGH: That is the question. Is he addicted to it? Can he stop? Can he start putting out press releases every day and policy statements every day that will actually help him in the polls, help him with the Republican establishment, and make him look presidential? Or is he addicted to being on TV like crack?
HEILEMANN: You made the point last week around the abortion comments that he was, that when Chris Matthews asked him those questions, he seemed unprepared for them. So if you combine exhaustion with pervasiveness, with lack of preparation, you could end up in a really bad place pretty fast.
SCARBOROUGH: And by the way, if you haven't done politics, if you haven't done it, you don't know then, when that question is asked, say, "I'm not going to answer your hypothetical question." They ask you again, "I'm not going to answer your hypothetical question." And they just keep coming, you keep saying, "I'm not going to answer your hypothetical question," and move on. But he feels like he has to take every interview, he feels like he has to answer every question, and he is ill-equipped to do that. And we saw that in a big way last week. Ben Ginsberg, I'm just curious from your observation, these mistakes that Trump's made, they seem to be accelerating. One of his most undisciplined weeks over the past week. Does this make it more likely that when we get to Cleveland that the Republican Party will be less likely to turn their party over to him if, let's say, he's even 100 delegates short?
BEN GINSBERG: Well, I think that the point is he's got a lot of time in the calendar. What's interesting is these series of mistakes, which all candidates make in a campaign, came in sort of the spring break period where they were no other intervening electoral events to sort of break the momentum. Now there's one on Tuesday, and it really depends how he does from now on in on what the delegates are going to be feeling like when they get to Cleveland. There is time to correct the problems, but the correction is probably a lot of substantive speeches and a lot of substantive interviews which is not exactly what's happened in the past weeks, which I think his campaign recognizes.
SCARBOROUGH: Willie, there is a, there is still, believe it or not -- Ben's right -- a long way to go, if he could discipline himself. I'm not saying he's going to become, you know, the candidate of women, but he certainly could erase a 23-point deficit.
WILLIE GEIST (CO-HOST): Yeah. And you say he should just put out policy statements, the only statements he puts out now are like the ones we just saw from Hope Hicks, which is sort of correcting something he'd said in an interview that day, and then another one elaborating on that statement.
SCARBOROUGH: Would stop giving interviews. I mean Barack Obama gave, what that guy rarely gave interviews in 2008. He controlled his message. He squeezed every word. He never gave the media anything he didn't want the media to give.
GEIST: Yeah. We don't know if Donald Trump's capable of not being on TV, we'll see.