As President Trump has sunken deeper into authoritarianism and white grievance politics over the past four years, most of the anchors at Fox News have followed suit, marching lockstep with him as he weaponizes bigotry to incite the racist voting bloc that helped propel him to power.
Fox’s cynical decision to embrace such ugly politics didn’t come without its consequences though, as pundits ranging from Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham have had to contend with boycotts which led directly to advertisers abandoning their programs. But as many companies made the wise and moral decision to distance themselves from naked hatred one company stood prominently by Trump and his media surrogates: My Pillow.
The founder of this pillow peddling company, Mike Lindell, has consistently been a staunch Trump supporter, donating massive amounts of money to his campaigns and earning himself the dubious honor of appearing in the White House Rose Garden with the president.
Trump and Lindell make an appropriate pair since the latter has been forced to settle numerous lawsuits over fraudulent advertising, misleading consumers, and falsely claiming he’s some kind of “sleep expert.” The two men are serial liars and birds of a crooked feather flock together.
Lindell nabbed more headlines recently after Trump promoted an unproven so-called “cure” for COVID-19 called oleandrin which Lindell supports. Again, it must be stressed that there is no proof the drug can actually do as advertised and conveniently Lindell owns stock in the company that produces it. The grift is as transparent as it is irresponsible.
Today, Lindell appeared on CNN for a conversation with Anderson Cooper that quickly turned explosive. As Lindell shilled for his imagined coronavirus cure, Cooper pushed back against his unfounded claims.
“How do you sleep at night?” asked Cooper after pointing out the obvious conflict of interest inherent in owning stock in an unreviewed drug while claiming it can stop a deadly pandemic. From there it only went downhill for Lindell.
“You really are like a snake oil salesman. I mean you could be in the Old West standing on a box telling people to drink your amazing elixir, that there’s no proof,” said Cooper as Lindell ranted that everything he does is for the “glory of God.”
“I do what Jesus has me do. I give the glory to God and I want to help people that’s my passion. I’m not money-driven,” Lindell ranted, making an odd claim for a man who has been accused numerous times of defrauding people to turn a profit.
“You think Jesus wants you out there promoting remedies that are not remedies? That they’ve never been tested?” Cooper responded.
“I’m not money-driven. Why would I do this?” Lindell asked.
“Money,” Cooper said bluntly.
“Ask yourself why would I ruin my reputation if I didn’t believe in this product?” asked Lindell.
“You don’t have a great reputation. You don’t have a great reputation,” Cooper said, driving the point home.
“Oh really?” said Lindell before launching into more faux-religious talk.
“You’ve settled for a million dollars in California with an F from the Better Business Bureau,” said Cooper, forced to talk over him. Lindell then laughably claimed he was “destroyed” by unfair forces for supporting Trump.
“So the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota is going after you because you support Trump?” asked Cooper incredulously.
Lindell insisted that such was the case. Cooper refused to dignify the ridiculous claim by treating it seriously and dismissed it as “sad.”
“For a man who professes faith for you to lie like this is extraordinary to me,” said Cooper as Lindell continued to profess his innocence.
A blunt call-out like the one Anderson engaged in with Lindell is long past due. Men like Mr. My Pillow are sowing disinformation and endangering lives just to make a quick buck. They must be exposed and shamed for the good of the country.
Watch the truly jaw-dropping interaction below.
Longer clip of Anderson Cooper's interview with My Pillow's Mike Lindell. It's important that we stop people who are trying to profit off of the pandemic based on their close connections with Trump-what he is peddling is ineffective and could be dangerous. pic.twitter.com/uo6jdzF5li
— Amee Vanderpool (@girlsreallyrule) August 18, 2020
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) August 18, 2020
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