Fox News Host Says Trump Will Get More Popular Because John McCain is ‘Sadly … Gone’


Fox & Friends host Brian Kilmeade made a ghoulish observation when he said that Donald Trump‘s approval would be “formidable” going into 2020 because people like Jeff Flake and the late Senator John McCain “are basically gone.”

On Tuesday morning’s edition of Trump’s favorite morning show, co-host Steve Doocy played a clip of Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez calling Republicans “cowards” for refusing to stand up to Trump:

Kilmeade responded to the clip by saying that he likes Trump’s chances in 2020 precisely because Republicans don’t push back against him.

“The president’s got really solid support among Republicans, and in terms of his approval rating, it’s around 43 percent,” Kilmeade said. “With this Mueller thing behind him, after those 300 pages are out, I imagine it’s going to go up even more.”

“Barring anything unforeseeable, which happens every day, something unforeseeable, but let’s say things don’t go that radical,” Kilmeade continued. “He will be extremely formidable going in because the Jeff Flakes and the John McCains, and sadly in John McCain’s case, that are pushing against the president, basically are gone.”

Kilmeade was among those who criticized Trump for his recent continued and escalating attacks on the late senator, but by saying that the attacks “swamped his own message.”

While Kilmeade is correct that John McCain is no longer alive to push back against Trump, he is still very much alive in Trump’s mind, if the recent attacks are any indication. Trump’s base may appreciate this behavior, but it is an open question how those attacks would affect Trump’s popularity in a general election, should he continue to make them.

Thus far, Trump doesn’t seem to have received any sort of a polling bump following the release of Attorney General William Barr‘s memo summarizing Special Counsel Robert Mueller‘s investigation.

In the RealClearPolitics average of polls, Trump’s approval rating has gone from 43.1 percent on March 24, when the Barr letter was released, to 43.2 percent as of April 2nd. In FiveThirtyEight’s aggregate of polls, Trump has lost .1 percent in that timeframe.

Watch the clip above, via Fox News.

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