It takes a lot to outdo Sarah Palin’s infamous answer to Katie Couric’s question, “what newspapers and magazines [do] you regularly read?” Trump just managed to do just that in a new Fox News interview with Tucker Carlson.
Carlson asked Trump a seemingly simple question: “What do you read?” What followed was an incomprehensible diatribe that would make Billy Madison’s answer about “The Puppy Who Lost His Way” seem worthy of a Pulitzer:
“Well, you know, I love to read. Actually, I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started. Every time I do about a half a page, I get a phone call that there’s some emergency, this or that. But we’re going to see the home of Andrew Jackson today in Tennessee and I’m reading a book on Andrew Jackson. I love to read. I don’t get to read very much, Tucker, because I’m working very hard on lots of different things, including getting costs down. The costs of our country are out of control. But we have a lot of great things happening, we have a lot of tremendous things happening.”
He maunders from vague references to “looking at a book” to “Andrew Jackson” to “getting costs down” to “tremendous things happening.” Of course, this incomprehensible run-on was more believable than that one time Trump tried to convince us that his favorite book was the Bible. But still.
While it didn’t satisfy Tucker’s question, Trump’s nonanswer at least gave us a momentary escape to a simpler time, when the nation’s biggest scandal was the fact that Sarah Palin was unable to name one single, solitary newspaper or magazine from which she receives her news:
COURIC: But what ones specifically? I’m curious.
PALIN: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.
Like both Palin and Trump, Obama was also an avid reader, per this answer in an interview with the chief book critic for the New York Times:
“Well, the last novel I read was Colson Whitehead’s “The Underground Railroad.” And the reminder of the ways in which the pain of slavery transmits itself across generations, not just in overt ways, but how it changes minds and hearts.”
So, yeah, two peas in a pod.
Congratulations on your answer, Donald Trump. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.
Brian Tyler Cohen is a political writer, actor, and comedy sketch director. He graduated from Lehigh University with a dual degree in English and Business. He currently lives in Los Angeles.