Remember When Mark Levin Despised Donald Trump and His ‘Sleazeball’ Supporters?
Mark Levin has spent this week blasting conservative media contemporaries Ann Coulter and Matt Drudge for supposedly turning on the president. But not so long ago the talk radio fixture and best-selling author condemned Donald Trump as a “globalist” hypocrite, mocked Fox News as a “Trump Super PAC,” and firmly labeled himself “Never Trump.”
Levin, who now hosts a weekend Fox News show and the third highest rated conservative radio program — behind Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity — launched his all-out offensive after Coulter denounced the president for promising to work with Democrats on DACA and Drudge prominently featured her comments on his influential news aggregation site.
“These people are sellouts, for whatever the reason, and I don’t much care. We have to fight for our liberty and for the future of our children and grandchildren,” Levin said on the Tuesday edition of his radio show, before angrily squeaking out that he doesn’t “give a damn” what the two have to say about the president.
But Levin’s own history — prior to his conveniently timed rebrand to pro-Trump sycophant when it became clear that the Republican Party is the Trump Party — suggests that, in searching for sellouts, he should look in the mirror first.
It’s not an exaggeration to say Levin’s support for Trump changes with the wind, as that he has flipped from loathing him to licking his boots not once, not twice, not thrice, but four times over the years.
While Levin has apparently tried to scrub some of his countless anti-Trump comments from the internet, the conservative blog The Buckley Club kept a running tally of the talk show host’s dramatic reversals. In 2011, Levin mocked and derided Trump for attempting to transition to conservative after years of donating to Democrats and touting relatively liberal views.
He said the billionaire is “not a conservative,” suggested that he is lying about being “pro-life,” excoriated him for donating to Rahm Emanuel, and accused him of pandering to Tea Party activists and treating them like they “are really stupid” by pushing a conspiracy theory about then-President Barack Obama’s birth certificate. Two years later, Levin suddenly began warming to Trump amid his beef with a number of liberal media figures, even inviting him on his show in early 2013. Levin’s public 180 didn’t fully materialize until after Trump promoted one of his books on Twitter, calling The Liberty Amendments: Restoring the American Republic “truly great & important.”
In a 2014 Facebook post, Levin was forced to acknowledge his blatant inconsistencies, writing of Trump, “[I have] explained my growing admiration for him over time, given his growing conservatism. There’s nothing contradictory or hypocritical or anything else.”
While their new-found mutual admiration enjoyed a honeymoon phase of close to two years, the Trump-incited conservative civil war in 2016 created more issues for their relationship. However, not before Levin managed to set himself up for a thoroughly embarrassing break up with The Donald.
At the start of the Trump campaign, the outsider candidate was under constant attack by moderate and hardline conservatives alike. As his poll numbers continued to rise and it became clear that the Trump campaign wasn’t another publicity stunt, the Republican “#NeverTrump” movement was born. But Levin wasn’t on board; in fact, rather than remaining Switzerland while waiting to see how the field shaped up like some in conservative media, he vouched for Trump and went out of his way to scorn Never Trumpers as “frauds,” “not conservatives,” and “buffoons” in April 2016.
One day later, Levin completely reversed course on Trump yet again. “I’m not voting for Donald Trump. Period,” the pundit said on his talk show in response to longtime Trump ally Roger Stone threatening to release the hotel rooms of RNC delegates if they flipped to supporting Ted Cruz.
“Count me as Never Trump,” Levin continued, who was a Cruz supporter at the time. “There’s been too much of this folks, way too much of this. The crap in the National Enquirer against Ted Cruz, the attacks on Michelle Fields, I mean, I can go right through the list, too much, too much, too much. At some point, you’ve got to stand up to it.”
In the ensuing period between Levin’s Never Trump announcement and the start of the general election, the radio host slammed Fox News for being a “Trump Super PAC,” referred to Trump as “no Reagan,” a “globalist,” “not a conservative,” and likened him to a “communist” for suggesting that the Republican Party switch to “the Workers’ Party.”
And this is why I’ve called Fox News the Trump Super Pac; this was obvious for some time, from top to bottom https://t.co/Ro60idZQd1
— Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) July 25, 2016
Given Levin’s recent attacks against Ann Coulter for opposing the president, perhaps the greatest irony in all of Levin’s fair-weather Trump support is a shot he took at Coulter during the 2016 election, in which he called her a “sleazeball” for supporting the then-Republican nominee.
“Now, there are sleazeballs, like [Stone], sleazeballs like Coulter, and sleazeballs like some talk show hosts — and I’m biting my tongue — who are so contemptible and pathetic, they want to use the most outrageous attacks on one of their colleagues to try and promote themselves,” Levin fumed. “It’s truly pathetic.”
Just four months later, Levin again rebranded as one of those “sleazeballs.”
“I’m gonna vote for Donald Trump. I’m gonna wind up voting for Donald Trump on Election Day,” Levin said in September, chalking up his dramatic change of heart to Hillary Clinton being “so awful.”
Gritting your teeth and selecting the best of two bad choices in a general election is one thing. But since Trump’s inauguration, Levin’s tune on Trump has shifted from reluctant supporter to full blown media propagandist incessantly praising his Dear Leader.
On his radio show and his furious appearances on Fox News, Levin lauds Trump as the second coming of Reagan and attacks his critics as frauds. He has called Trump “more conservative than either of his two GOP predecessors,” insisted that Americans “should be very proud of your president, a real commander-in-chief,” and told his listeners that “If you don’t see many of the good things this president is doing as a conservative, you are also blind.”
Most recently Levin, while attacking Coulter and the Drudge Report, suggested right-wing media personalities who stand up to Trump are de facto “pseudo-conservatives”:
“I didn’t even know Ann Coulter was still around, did you, Mr. Producer? I had no idea. But now that she wants Trump out, along with the slobbering news media and the slobbering Democrats and our enemies overseas — I think we should all now genuflect and attack the president of the United States. And my brother Drudge is doing a hell of a good job of it … I get sick and tired of these crybabies, these pseudo-conservatives, who have gotten rich and famous as conservatives, now all of a sudden: ‘Well, I’m not sure.'”
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]