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The New Abnormal with Molly Jong-Fast & Rick Wilson
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The New Abnormal with Molly Jong-Fast & Rick Wilson

Author: The Daily Beast

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This members-only episode was originally published on August 2, 2020 and moved to this feed for full member access.


Turns out, Sen. Cory Booker is a bigger pacifist than we suspected. He joined Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast on this members-only episode of The New Abnormal and told them about the time “a big guy” asked the New Jersey native to punch Trump in the face–and his response to that person. Booker also shared his thoughts on what may happen in the Senate thanks to Trump (“I think that what people are realizing is this could be the end for Republican party dominance”), how the president compared to Nixon, and the time one of his campaign staffers projectile vomited all over him and his partner Rosario Dawson. Plus! The trio imagine Putin staying in a Motel 6 and get Booker’s advice on how the Democratic Party can get out the vote: “If you’re not doing something about an issue that you care about, then you are complicit.”


 

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If you thought Ivanka Trump’s childhood best friend, Lysandra Ohrstrom, had enough to say about the First Daughter in her scathing Vanity Fair article, you’d be mistaken. Oh no, Lysandra isn’t finished yet. She came on the latest episode of The New Abnormal to talk about the president’s favorite kid and the offensive and crude things Ivanka and her dad would say or do when the two were growing up—and what finally made Lysandra become the “class traitor” many have been quick to call her on Twitter. “I have really been grappling with whether to do this for so long since Trump announced that he was running,” she told Molly Jong-Fast. In fact, “Ly” (as Ivanka called her) had been loyal to Ivanka over the last four years to the point where she forwarded her press requests as a heads up. But standing in line to vote early this fall, enough was enough. (“I just went home. I sat at my computer and I started writing a long essay about why her dad shouldn't be president. And it was very much pegged to my recollections of growing up with him.”) Some of the “recollections” include Trump calling out Lysandra’s looks and nicknaming Ivanka’s young friends after models like Cindy Crawford, behavior that she found “shocking as a kid.” (“Most dads didn't make comments about your weight. Most dads didn't kind of call all of my young friends after different models.”) She also addresses that necklace incident mentioned in the article, all of their friends who called to thank her for writing the article, and if Ivanka will ever be welcomed back in New York City. Plus! New York Times National Politics Reporter Astead Wesley joins to talk about an interesting call he had with AOC and the prediction about QAnon Queen and Congresswoman-elect Marjorie Taylor Greene that made Molly sick. And! Rick Wilson and Molly talk about “Coup-anon” and the ways Trump is basically “Kim Jong Un without the good hair.” Oh, and why Sidney Powell is “a complete whackadoodle,” in case it isn’t obvious. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Team Biden has made his incoming style of presidency very clear: Keep the peace. Or in his aides’ words, “move the country forward.” Unfortunately, moving forward doesn’t include prosecuting Trump and his band of thieves, er, White House staffers and campaign confidants. In this bonus episode of The New Abnormal, which happened LIVE on Zoom, The Daily Beast’s DC Bureau Chief Jackie Kucinich confirms this to co-hosts Rick WIlson and Molly Jong-Fast: “Where we’re at in the process, it doesn’t seem like that’s going to happen.” BUT. And this is a big BUT: Biden’s Attorney General still could go after Trump, points out Beast Trumpworld Reporter Asawin “Swin” Suebsaeng (“It will be interesting to see how that particular pick moves forward.”) Speaking of “what ifs,” the quad also muse about what the political world will look like without Trump as president, and sorry to say, not too much different. “One of the worst liberal fantasies is that he’s going to go to Mar-a-Lago and not come back,” Molly says, but that ain’t gonna happen. “Biden will be president January 20. But the Trump presidency as it is a state of mind is going to continue. Anyone who thinks the Republican party is going to go back to how they were before Trump is living in a fantasy land,” says Jackie. Rick and Swin have even more sinister predictions: “I don’t want to jump the gun here, but we should see if he tries to run some shadow foreign relations [scheme] from Mar-a-Lago or the Trump organization,” says Swin. Don’t forget the rallies, either! According to Rick, they’ll continue, but “they’ll be ticketed. He’ll use them as a revenue source.” Then! Jackie talks about the chances of Biden’s ole buddy Mitch McConnell coming around and the group makes their pick for which MAGA bot will make the best bachelor or bachelorette. Plus! Will Democrats have to drag GSA official Emily Murphy out of her post? And what the hell is happening in Georgia!?  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
“It's so funny,” Molly Jong-Fast tells Sen. Amy Klobuchar. “There's been so much sexist talk about women [in politics] being too emotional and being too sensitive. And then we have an entire party held hostage by the president's moods.”  Klobuchar laughs in response: “Exactly. I think it was John Bolton that said that we just don't have time to live through seven stages of the president's grief. That is exactly what's happening.” “Even when presidents have lost elections,” the senator adds, “they have led, they have had to deal with last-minute crises. And this guy is not doing it. I don't think we should be surprised, but the fact that he is not leading and trying to demolish our democracy at the same time and tarnish the reputation of good people like [Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency] Chris Krebs is just an unbelievable trio of evil.”  But don’t worry, the senator says on the latest edition of The New Abnormal. Despite all the histrionics and the wackadoodle press conferences and the late-night tweets, this presidency is over. “It is getting more and more clear that there's no other paths. And at some point [the Republicans] are going to have to allow for this transition.” It’s not even like the goal of the Trumpists is to win, despite all their quasi-fascist, overturn-the-election talk, says Rick Wilson. “The goal is to sow dissension, the goal is to build chaos. The goal is to ensure that the Trump brand for the next four years still is able to grift off of their email list and suck down rube dollars: ‘they can steal our election, but they can't steal our pride.’”  And what should Biden do, once he’s in the Oval and Trump is still doing his authoritarian wannabe thing? And his enablers are back in the senate? There have been some leaks out of Bidenworld that Joe is disinclined towards retribution. “I think they need to recognize that playing by the Marquess of Queensberry rules and playing nice” won’t work, Rick says. “I think Lindsey Graham needs to be under investigation by the ethics committee. The guy’s involved in outright attempts to fraudulently manipulate the election. It’s just crazy.”  Molly isn’t so sure. Quoting Masha Gessen, she says: “it's really important that the president doesn't look like he's doing that [taking retribution against Trump], because democratic norms are so important. Instead, we have to narrate the experience of the people who've gone through Trumpism.”  Which is another way of saying this is—hopefully, please God—almost over. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Molly Jong-Fast explains to Rick Wilson why she got into a brouhaha with the Congresswoman from the First District of QAnon in the latest episode of The New Abnormal, which features presidential transition veteran Neera Tanden of The Center For American Progress and Carl Zimmer of The New York Times, who gets us up to speed on the latest vaccine breakthroughs.   Molly and Congresswoman-elect Marjorie Taylor Greene, an avowed QAnon supporter, fell out on Twitter over different interpretations of government interference in a woman’s health.   “I did make fun of her because she used the phrase ‘My body, my choice,’ when referring to not wanting to wear a mask, which is of course an expression that is used by the pro-choice community,” Molly said. “So, I may have suggested that she might also be pro-choice, which got her just enraged because while she won’t wear a mask, she does not want anyone to have control over their own uterus.”   Rick said Greene will continue to court the vote of conspiracy theorists who believed President Trump went to Washington to fight a cabal of elite pedophiles even though he was now on the way out. “She’s a weaponized money suck for crazy people. And so that’s why she’s going to flirt with Q and all this other bullshit.”   Rick said he had been following one other Twitterstorm this week, over the blossoming friendship between forgotten Trump child Tiffany and another fringe Republican congressman Matt Gaetz. “It's someday going to grace, the pages of TMZ, and perhaps even be the subject of a Netflix show called ‘The Orange Crown.’”   Molly agreed this one has legs: “I feel like it's so stupid. They're probably going to get married.”   Neera Tanden, who worked on the 2008 Obama transition, said Trump’s “temper tantrum” over the election, which he lost, would have real terms consequences. “You may face unnecessary deaths because of their slow walking transition, which has nothing to do with anything other than feeding the defeated president’s ego,” she said.   In most departments, Tanden says the challenge for Biden is not understanding how the agencies work as they have ample experience of that, it’s trying to work out just how much damage has been done. “I imagine there’s a fair amount of trying to bury the bodies,” she said. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
President Donald Trump may be following Vladimir Putin’s Autocratic playbook closer than we all realize—and the Russian interference was just the tip of the iceberg. In this bonus members-only episode of The New Abnormal, the New Yorker staff writer and Surviving Autocracy author Masha Gessen joins co-host Molly Jong-Fast to talk about this phenomenon. They explain that leaders like Trump and Putin put a system in place to hold power, and if you’re wondering how a man like Trump could do something so seemingly elaborate, it makes sense. “The destruction they wreak is all the more effective because of the incompetence,” Gessen explains. “They thrive on instability. The more anxious people are the less likely they are to opt for change ” Biden, they say, will have to dismantle this system (though they wish the president-elect would ditch the “Build Back Better” campaign). Why? For the same reason they dislike when people solely focus on Russian interference. “We've been very stupid to focus on it as much as we have,” Gessen explains. “The problem is not Russian interference, the problem is we sank so low to where Russian interference sank in.” Plus! Hear why they compare Trump to a ‘witch afraid of water’ when it comes to lawmakers of color like AOC and the late John Lewis. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Does Donald Trump even know what a coup is? Doubtful, which is one of the reasons, in this episode of The New Abnormal, that co-hosts Rick Wilson and Molly Jong-Fast don’t believe whatever nonsense the president is pulling counts as one. That, and the fact that the military needs to support said coup and they won’t. “They may be telling him that [they are], but it is the fake orgasm of coups. They're making noises that sound real, but it's not real,” says Rick. Still, the scammer-in-chief and his GOP minions are persistent, and asking for money to help fund these state lawsuits. (“If you wrote this in a Hollywood script about a family of presidential grifters, it would be too on the nose,” adds Rick.) The Beast’s National Security reporter Spencer Ackerman makes his TNA debut to explain the lead up to Mark Esper’s departure and how the Pentagon is basically planning to f*ck Joe Biden. “I'm not the guy who does the comforting stories,” he laughs. Then, columnist and Veep producer Frank Rich tells the crew the ways Trump is much more incompetent than Selina Meyer and Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania John Fetterman makes a very strong case against there being voter fraud in the state. Plus! Rick explains how Trump’s presidency is like a robot floating through space and Molly gives a new name to his followers. Hint: It has the word cult in it.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
She may have been hoping to spend her days jet-setting between Davos and Aspen—when she wasn’t mingling with Manhattan’s gentry. But only the super rich get those kinds of second chances. And that ain’t Ivanka. “They get forgiven because they have billions of dollars—they can float a charity. Someone like [New York Jets owner and ambassador to the UK] Woody Johnson, who's given millions and millions of dollars to Trump and who has been a real Republican piece of shit, will get forgiven because he can donate and donate, right? Someone like Ivanka, who is so clearly an eyesore—and isn't so rich—ultimately, she’s not going to get forgiven,” Molly says on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. The best Ivanka Trump can hope for, Molly Jong-Fast says, is a scuzzy reality show, like her dad. Speaking of the Trump family, Mary Trump joins the crew to discuss her uncle’s electoral loss. “It's amazing. On the one hand, losing is the thing that is the worst thing to do [in his mind]. But he's never won anything ever… never won anything legitimately. Legitimacy means nothing to him because his ego is such that if he gets the win, just by virtue of cheating, lying, stealing, he knows he deserves to win. So it's okay for him to cheat, lie, and steal.” In happier news, famed scientist and physician Eric Topol says the early results about the new COVID vaccine really are a ray of hope. He believes it might even be a so-called “superhuman vaccine… meaning it’s even more powerful than the typical human response,” he tells Molly. “We could see the virus having a hard time finding people to infect by mid-year… This virus will probably be endemic. It'll be here for years. But it's just going to have a harder time finding people.” But don’t throw out your masks or anything, he warns. “They're going to be really important in 2021… First of all, the vaccines, when we talk about 90% efficacy, that's against pneumonia or getting your body infected with illness, it doesn't sterilize the upper respiratory tract. That is the nose. And so you could be a carrier of the virus. You’re going to have to wear a mask because you won't know if the virus is sitting” in your nose. So, not back to normal any time soon. But we’ll take it. Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Joe Biden is asking Americans to turn down the heat. Some of his strongest supporters are busy lighting one another on fire. Biden and Kamala Harris hadn’t even been declared the winners of the election when members of their far-flung coalition began attacking one another: Blue Dog versus Democratic Socialist, the Squad versus Abigail Spanberger and other purple-district Dems. “You would think that they would want to enjoy their victory for, like, 30 seconds. You would think that after toppling a sitting president, they would want a high five once,” Daily Beast Editor-in-Chief Noah Shachtman tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on a special edition of The New Abnormal. Especially because there are two big run-off elections in Georgia this January—races that will determine whether Mitch McConnell runs the Senate or not. Rick, for one, smells blood: “There may be some Republicans who now look at McConnell as the Alamo,, but no one has ever like gotten up on a rainy January morning and thought, ‘My God, I must defend Mitch. McConnell's honor! He is one last knight standing on the hill!’” Plus! Molly talks about the deeply weird dynamic of cable news hosts trying to get Trump to GTFO. Then she gets Rick to admit that Americans love a bit of socialism—when it’s called something else. The gang ponders what constitutes a giant raft of horseshit. Rick addresses his GOP past. And Trumpists scramble to find new jobs. (“My favorite piece of intel from election day was from one sources in the campaign. I said, ‘What you doing?’ And the response was: ‘LinkedIn.’”) Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
“Ever since RBG died, I've basically spent the last six weeks in existential terror,” Elie Mystal, The Nation’s justice correspondent, tells Molly Jong-Fast. Trump appoints Amy Coney Barrett, so she could hand the election back to president Trump. But now, Mystal says on the latest edition of The New Abnormal, “I am no longer worried about these dumb lawsuits… Where we are now is the best possible position for Biden to be in order to fend off legal challenges to his emerging electoral college victory. I have extreme confidence that none of these wackadoodle, crazy lawsuits that Trump and Trump's campaign throws out there will have any relevance—even in front of Republican appointed judges and arch conservative of Supreme courts… The reason why I have such confidence is because Biden is winning. Remember in 2000, where Gore was trying to make up a gap, right? Well, the Republican courts are probably willing to allow Trump to get as many votes counted as he needs in order to make up any perceived gap that he has. That one thing. Throwing out votes that were received by election day, counted, tabulated, and reported to the press? Throwing those votes away because they don't like who those people voted for? It’s a really different proposition.” Plus! Molly asks how can the Democratic party can ever repay Black women. Rick Wilson imagines Trump in Cats! And famed journalism professor Jay Rosen talks about the many schisms in the Murdoch media empire.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
James Carville, like the rest of us, is having some mixed emotions at the moment. After getting all kinds of polling data saying the Democrats were clean up, the truth is … well, kind of the opposite happened. The gap between expectations and reality was so big, even Joe Biden apparently being on the precipice of taking the White House seems just a little unsatisfying. “Look, this is the biggest election in my lifetime, before my lifetime. And I wake up in the morning, we won the popular vote and we're going to win the electoral college. And I feel like fucking shit,” Carville tells Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson on the post-election edition of The New Abnormal. “Yes, we will have competent cabinet secretaries. And yes, we will have competent ambassadors. And the trains will run on time. And that's about it, right? That's something. That's a lot more than we've got now. But it's not anything close to what we all were hopeful for.” Buck up, Rick tells Carville (and the rest of us). “Donald Trump is about to ride into the sunset—and by sunset, I mean prison—in the immediate future. People need to be of good cheer. This is a stunning victory,” Rick says, anticipating that the absentee votes in places like Pennsylvania and Michigan will break Biden’s way. “It says something about our political pessimism in the era of Trump that everyone's depressed about this outcome. Get the fuck outta here. We just beat Donald fucking Trump.” Maybe so, Molly replies. But she’s still pissed—like, beyond pissed—at the pollsters who gave so many false hope. “Fuck those fuckers,” she says, before a whole bunch of stuff we had to bleep out.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Trump’s hype men like to say that he’s so smart. A tactical genius. Always 14 moves ahead of you libtards. Surely, the Trumpkins say, there’s a deep logic to the president spending the waning days of his campaign attacking America’s most respected public-health expert. Under no circumstance is Trump just blurting out a bunch of… Oh, who are we kidding. The guy has the emotional control and strategic wisdom of a toddler. “I feel like it's important to remember: He is never playing three dimensional chess. He's just eating a checker,” Molly Jong-Fast quips on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “And, and the thing is, it was not a strategic move. He's just such a baby that the crowd started chanting, ‘fire Fauci, fire Fauci,’ and he can't help himself but wanting to fill that hole, that black hole, in his heart. And so, he gives the people what they want,” political strategist Tim Miller says. Rick Wilson chortles, channeling Trump: “Before I fire Fauci, I want a warm up by setting this bucket of kittens on fire.” No, but seriously. The craziest part about this crazy episode, The Beast’s Erin Banco explains, is that Trump thinks he’s absolutely crushed it on COVID response. “When the president talks about it to his advisors, he's reinforced by the people around him, who believe that they just killed it, that they did an awesome job,” she says. Plus! Bill Barr’s white horse! Marco Rubio’s parachute pants! Ric Grenell’s true obsession! New Jersey’s neo-Confederate dumbfucks! Bill Stepien escape plans! And Jesse the Producer’s first-ever Fuck That Guy!  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Sharon Stone doesn’t trust Trump one bit. In this members-only episode of The New Abnormal podcast, the actress sits down with host Molly Jong-Fast to chat about abortion, the #MeToo movement, voting, and the pandemic. Growing up, Stone attributes her involvement in politics to her father. "He was really believed that people of all races, colors, creeds, gender identities should have the same rights and privileges. And it was a very, very strong attitude in our family," Stone said. The two also spoke about her thoughts on the election, and all the things she’s doing to help get out the vote. “I had the great pleasure of moderating a zoom fundraiser. I worked with a good friend of mine and we organized a grassroots voting campaign called Vote Proud to get people out to vote who are in the LGBTQ community. Anything and everything that I possibly can do to get people out to vote," she said. Stone then touches on Trump's response to the pandemic. We’ll just say this: Don’t expect her to be first in line to get a vaccine if he’s still the president. and says there’s no way a vaccine is safe right now and touches on her work with infectious disease expert Dr. Fauci. "We do not have a clear path to a safe vaccine yet at all," she says, adding in her thoughts on Dr. Anthony Fauci and what she really thinks of the president: “He does not respect himself and others."  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Hindsight is always 2020, and in this case, Andrew Weissman is pretty sure where Mueller and team came up short. He was part of the team that investigated Enron. He personally promoted former FBI attorney Lisa Page and served as Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s deputy during the Russian collusion hearings. He wrote a book about the experience, but came on the newest members-only episode of The New Abnormal to share that insight with co-host Molly Jong-Fast. When it came down to it, “we didn't have sufficient proof that people in the Trump campaign were trained not to accept anything from foreigners,” says Weissman. Also, “I think we should have said whether we thought he obstructed justice or not. I didn't think we should have used very hard to understand double negatives.” Then there’s the four-eyed elephant in the room named Bill Barr, who Weissman says no one from his team anticipated “undermining the rule of law.” But it didn’t take them long in their investigation to figure out that was what was happening. Speaking of which, Weissman predicts a lot more “harm” to the justice system if Trump is re-elected for another four years. And if Trump isn’t? It won’t be gumdrops and roses just yet. Weissman has an unnerving prediction for what Trump will do if he loses. Plus! He breaks down how he got to this place and has some action items to make sure it never happens again.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Molly Jong-Fast, like many of us, is nervous about the election. Sure, the polls look pretty decent for Biden; they looked good for Hillary, right? Not exactly, Amy Walter of the Cook Political Report tells Molly. In the last couple of weeks of the last campaign, there was so much attention on those freakin’ emails. “You could see the race tightening. Hillary went from up 11... and then in the very last NBC poll, she was up four points, with 16% undecided,” Walter recalls on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. This time, though, the pandemic is the focus. And Trump has basically surrendered to the virus. “Now Biden's up, nine, 10 points with very few people undecided and very few people thinking they're going to vote third party. So it's just, it's a different environment. Biden's a different kind of candidate. And Donald Trump is the president at a time when we're in the middle of a crisis that the majority of Americans don't think he's handled well.” Then! Sen. Sherrod Brown talks about whether Biden has a shot in increasingly-Red Ohio. Plus! Rick Wilson debuts the Lincoln Project Time Machine! MAGA junkies chase the Dragon of Cray! Jared Kushner attempts to outsmart a sack of hair! Steve Bannon gets ready to punch out license plates instead of lies! And Eric Trump takes a delightful trip to Frog Dick, Alabama! On election day The New Abnormal is going to do what we always do and talk about what's happening with the election and you can listen in if you Join Beast Inside today where you'll gain access to an exclusive Zoom version of our podcast where you can ask your own questions. We’ll help you stomach the last moments—or so we hope—of the longest, weirdest, crappiest presidential campaign in modern history. Join Beast Inside today and then join us on election day when we pull back the curtain, New Abnormal-style.To hear this along with the rest of our upcoming bonus episodes head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com. That's newabnormal.thedailybeast.com.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Rick Wilson and his crew of Republican refugees have been getting in Trump’s head practically since the day they got together. But over the weekend, the psychological combat hit a new peak, when Jared and Ivanka sent one of daddy’s lawyers after the Lincoln Project over a billboard they put in Times Square. And Rick, for one, was loving it. “A big part of our operations has been from the beginning to disrupt the leadership of the Trump campaign and to cause Donald Trump himself to poop his diaper and to cause these people to lose their minds. [Now we’ve] pinn[ed] down Jared and Ivanka Thursday and Friday of last week, and distract[ed] Donald Trump,” Rick explains to Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal.  “So it's the eve of battle. And two of the generals of Trump's army have now been paralyzed. They have thought of nothing else for the last several days… You drag off resources, attention, time, focus from what they should be fighting and you make them fight the battles you want them to fight. Think of me as kind of like a redneck Sun-Tzu.” Then! Molly has an incredibly powerful interview with Dr. Rick Bright, the vaccine expert turned whistleblower. He was in charge of a massive federal effort to develop medical countermeasures to biological threats. But he couldn’t stand by while Team Trump pushed a bogus treatment for COVID-19. “I had to decide at that moment to be complicit and be part of a government that would put people's lives at risk—or to step out,” he tells Molly, choking up. “I still get emotional about it because I still remember that day of stepping out and how impactful it was on me, knowing that it was going to change my life. You just know they're gonna come after you. So you have to decide, is it worth it? And to me, it was absolutely worth it.” Plus! Will Trump’s wig come off in a toilet? Where’s the real power in American politics? (Hint: not in D.C.) Why did Team Trump want to inject Santa? And how in the name of Gotham City did Bane get on this podcast? Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Preet Bharara, the former U.S. Attorney of the Southern District of New York, joins “The New Abnormal” host Molly Jong-Fast to chat about the last presidential debate, the story leading up to his resignation, and why there could be an "avalanche" of new revelations if President Donald Trump loses the election. Bharara said that the presidential debate was "relatively normal," but that's no thanks to Trump or his opponent Joe Biden. "The person I credit most for that as most people do is Kristen Welker," he said.  Jong-Fast then reminds Bharara of one of his proudest moments from 2016: Not calling Trump back. He details the incident and why he doesn't regret his decision for a second.  "It is a good thing for public servants not to so badly cling to their job… that you won't do the right thing," he said.  Next, Jong-Fast and Bharara chat about the impact of the election outcome and what will happen if Trump loses.  "My guess is there is going to be a cascade of people who are going to write books for a lot of money, or good citizens who are going to blow the whistle on all sorts of things… that we don't know about yet," he said.  Adding, "I also think the potential for bad conduct and bad activity during the transition, if Trump definitively loses, is going to be very high. It's going to be very difficult for either Congress or some prosecution authorities to ignore what could very well be an avalanche of revelations after January 20, about this president and the conduct of the people in this administration." Lastly, they discuss how someone with Trump's background could never get a national security clearance, Bharara's book Doing Justice, plus more! Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
On a special episode of The New Abnormal responding to the final presidential debate Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson are joined by GOP political consultant Mike Madrid, Daily Beast senior editor Tim Teeman and Gary Peters, the Senator from Michigan, who is here to outline the fight against voter intimidation at the polls.   Molly was aghast at Trump’s almost normal debate performance. “It’s almost worse when Trump tries to be normal than when Trump is just insane,” she said. “When he acts like a normal president… then you have constantly fact check him in a way that you don’t when he’s just huffing and puffing and screaming.”   Madrid, a veteran Republican pollster now working with the Lincoln Project, said Trump’s relative calm on stage means he can’t be counted out of the race yet. “If he had just blown his top and set his hair on fire and started stomping on his feet, then we’d be like, OK, it’s done,” he said. “He can lie in different gears.”   But Rick is not convinced that Trump did enough to turn it around. “My theory of the case going in was that Trump needed an absolute knockout, absolutely needed to slaughter Joe Biden on that stage tonight. And I don’t think he got there. I don’t think he even got close to getting there,” he said.   Away from the debate stage, Tim Teeman joined the gang to discuss the Trump campaign’s last gasp “gaslighting” effort to court LGBTQ voters by claiming Trump had been an ally all along. “I don't know about Donald Trump’s personal bigotry, but it doesn’t matter if he’s a bigot personally or not,” he said. “He’s advancing a course of bigotry for his own ends. And that honestly makes him just as dangerous as the bigot with a pair of keys in their fist, ready to punch you in the face on the street.” Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Comedy legend Sacha Baron Cohen goes deep on all of the crazy things that happened during the filming of his Showtime series ‘Who Is America?’—including truly incredible stories about his interactions with Sarah Palin, O.J. Simpson, Ben Carson and more. He also talks about interviewing Donald Trump as Ali G. and reveals some big secrets behind his classic film ‘Borat.’This episode was recorded in front live audience as part of the SAG Conversations series at the SAG-Aftra Foundation in Los Angeles on May 21, 2019.Follow @SachaBaronCohen and @mattwilstein on Twitter and @lastlaughpod on Instagram.  Highlights from this episode and others at The Daily Beast. Please subscribe to ‘The Last Laugh’ podcast to hear more great interviews with comedians.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Rick Wilson spent years working for Rudy Giuliani. He used to look up to his boss, the mayor. These days, he can barely look down without spitting. “The worst possible Greek tragedy doesn't encompass the fall of Rudy, from calamity to clown show to complete moral and physical collapse,” Rick tells co-host Molly Jong-Fast on the latest episode of The New Abnormal. “The fact that Trump views him and uses him as this hatchet man, his delivery boy for these absurd attacks… You know, there's a part of me that like, ‘Do you have no fucking pride left? You only get trotted out for the shit jobs like these. You only get brought out and hosed off once every few months when Donald Trump has to do something disgusting.’” Caroline Giuliani, Rudy’s daughter, isn’t happy with the decisions he’s made, either. That’s why she recently announced that she’s voting for Joe Biden. “I felt like I had an obligation just because it's, it's just so bad. We're in such a crisis,” she tells Molly. “I want to be on record as being on the right side of history. I also felt like people feel so alone right now. I've had such a great reaction from so many people just saying, ‘Thank you... You articulated things I've been feeling.’ And it just made me feel a little less alone.” Then! Alabama Sen. Doug Jones talks about why his opponent, Tommy Tuberville, is even worse than Roy Moore, the last guy he beat.  Want more? Become a Beast Inside member to enjoy a limited-run series of bonus interviews from The New Abnormal. Guests include Cory Booker, Jim Acosta, and more. Head to newabnormal.thedailybeast.com to join now.  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
On the night of the duelling townhalls, Molly Jong-Fast and Rick Wilson recorded a special episode of The New Abnormal as a desperate Trump delivered a wild performance that virtually served as an ad for Joe Biden. Two guests join the show to sum up the state of American politics right now with Jay Michaelson, legal affairs columnist at The Daily Beast, Rabbi and editor at 10% Happier, on hand to run down the latest from the Amy Coney Barrett hearings. And audience favorite Hank Gilbert, who is running for the Texas first congressional district against Republican Louie Gohmert, is back to share the unprecedented election buzz he says he is seeing in Texas. Gilbert says he can’t believe it took so long but Texans have finally realized that “this narcissistic bastard” is bad for America and they’re ready to vote him out. “People are excited. I’ve never seen this type of atmosphere before,” he said.   Trump seemed to be doing his best to show viewers himself that he was not fit to be president during the NBC townhall, says Rick. “You had Trump with one leg on the ground, leaning over, hunched over, glaring at Savannah Guthrie like he was a mad man, like he was about to flee the scene of a crime. And you had Joe Biden sitting in the chair, legs crossed, hands gesturing, talking smoothly and calmly.” “When he wouldn’t answer the QAnon question, all I could think was, ‘Does Joe Biden need to report this like an in-kind contribution?’ This was fucking crazy,” Rick said. “This shitshow was a truth window into Trump.” He had, at least, managed to directly criticize white supremacy after failing to do so at the presidential debate, which just confused Molly: “Wouldn't it be more of a no brainer to disavow QAnon—the Democrats eat children—than white supremacy? His supporters are already racist.”  See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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Comments (86)

Julie Keller

please fix. Cannot download or play the episode.

Nov 24th
Reply

Toni Diane

Can't play the episode. 😤

Nov 24th
Reply

Lisa Murphy-Tate

Geez, I wish we could hear what you guys bleep out!

Nov 17th
Reply

Bard Groupie

I want to know more about what the hands on healing to the Remembrance wreath Donnie performed was all about? If you don't know what I'm talking about, I'd rather let someone else explain.

Nov 13th
Reply (1)

Beth Rhyan

I just learned more about Covid-19 and the prospect of the vaccine in this podcast than I have from any source since the pandemic began. Thanks, Molly for asking the right questions so even us medical trial ignorant folk can understand!

Nov 10th
Reply

Yasmine C

I'm sure Nepotism Barbie will do just fine.

Nov 10th
Reply

Jennifer

lp.p

Nov 7th
Reply

Carpe Diem

so...are you saying that pollsters need to learn how to measure the impact of sabotage and disinformation?

Nov 5th
Reply

Janie Garza

I was so anxious last night I projectile vomiited!!!

Nov 4th
Reply

Lorrie Heichelbech

Thank God for 'The New Abnormal'. This podcast has saved my sanity. Thank you again.

Oct 28th
Reply (1)

Richard Thornton

Old man Giuliani is a putz. I recall his politicization of BAM and their art exhibitions he and that equally idiotic Bill Donahue.

Oct 21st
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dp

ive wondered if Rudy, and Im serious here, didnt become brain-affected by 911 and the long term symptoms of inhaling toxins, or suffers ptsd.. combined with his age and use of alcohol..hes a completely different person than the man who was mayor.

Oct 20th
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Yasmine C

Rudy's daughter makes a special appearance to tell everyone why she's voting for Biden. The holidays must be real special at the Giuliani household!

Oct 20th
Reply

howard mhc

Molly was on fire here.

Oct 18th
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Bard Groupie

Regarding Lindsey, why is he squirming and muttering with repetitive ticks much more than usual? is he on drugs? Or even a medication that causes stress? The only other reason besides the above is that his world is about to crash down and he is under enormous stress. Anyone notice the tics too?

Oct 16th
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Yasmine C

just in case you didn't watch the Trump shit show last night.

Oct 16th
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Bard Groupie

Any guy, not over the age of 80 who calls his wife 'mother' is a serious white man style super freak in my books. (shiver)

Oct 9th
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Linda Conroy

great episode! love kathy!

Oct 8th
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Hipichic Samsung

How do Beast Insiders access the full bonus episodes?

Oct 5th
Reply

Yasmine C

Rick wants to give the moderators shock collars so that they can zap anyone that misbehaves. I'm all in.

Sep 30th
Reply
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