One of the innovators in the absurdities of raucous reality television has accused President Trump of stealing his schtick wholesale and transporting it to the White House.
Jerry Springer, the former lawyer and Ohio Democratic politician who made his name with a self-titled reality show that pioneered the importation of tabloid sensationalism to the world of TV, told an audience at an AFL-CIO Labor Day event in Cincinnati earlier this week that Trump “took my show and brought it to the White House.”
According to WKYC-TV in Cincinnati, Springer was appearing at the event to support Democratic congressional candidates ahead of the midterm elections and was concerned more about bread and butter political issues than the absurdity of a White House as full of conflict and profanity as one of the signature brawls on The Jerry Springer Show.
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He addressed the crowd on the issue of tax cuts from the perspective of a member of the small group of people that most benefited from the deficit-inducing giveaway to the wealthy that Trump and the Republican Party have enacted.
“I don’t care this administration is giving someone like me a tax cut,” Springer said. “What an absurdity. What are you giving people like me a tax cut? If you’re willing, because a wealthy person gets a couple more dollars in a paycheck, if you’re willing to sell the soul of America for a couple more bucks, then don’t ever ask a young man or woman to fight and die for this county, because you don’t believe in it.”
Springer’s comparison of the conduct of the Trump Administration to the angry and sometimes violent conflicts he featured on his show could not be more appropriate, but having decided against a return to political office for himself, declining to seek a chance to occupy the Ohio Governor’s mansion, the Hillary Clinton-supporting TV host is focusing on working to help Democrats return to the majority in Congress.
Springer has criticized Trump, slamming the president’s “vicious attack on the free press” as “an assault on America.” At this point, though, Springer puts the onus on voters to turn this disaster of an administration around.
“It’s on us,” Springer said. “No more can we blame President Trump. After the first election, we didn’t know. Now we know.”
While many attribute the current coarsening of American political discourse to the cultural shifts that Springer’s show helped enable by providing dumbed-down sensationalism as mainstream entertainment, at least the TV host is working to help rectify some of the worst consequences of the decline in civility in this nation by helping to end the Republican control of Congress, hopefully putting an end to the unchecked lunacy of Trump’s first two years in office.
Follow Vinnie Longobardo on Twitter.