After spreading lies and distortions to hundreds of millions of Americans, what do you do for an encore?
Apparently you run for president!
“I still harbor somewhere in my gut that I’m still very interested in politics,” CNN President Jeff Zucker recently told David Axelrod in “The Axe Files” podcast.
That means President Donald Trump go end up going head-to-head with the boss of his least favorite news network.
Now that’s some must-see TV!
“You turned down an opportunity to work for Al Gore in 2000,” Axelrod pointed out. “You’ve talked in the past about potentially running for office.”
“I’m still interested in that,” Zucker said. “And it’s something I would consider.”
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Zucker didn’t mention 2020 specifically. But that just so happens to be when his latest CNN contract expires, Vanity Affair reported earlier this year.
While he would no doubt have to be let out of that contract early to campaign, it also gives him the perfect perch: He can have his network take potshots at Trump while he sits in the shadows, bides his time and leaps into the race at the most opportune moment.
Axelrod – chief strategist in both of Barack Obama’s presidential campaigns – seemed to think Zucker could have what it takes.
“Gimme a call if you’re thinking about it,” he said.
Zucker leads a network that is working 24/7 to take down Trump. The president, for his part, has branded CNN “fake news” and gone to battle against its personalities.
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CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta was even BANNED briefly after a contentious press briefing.
But the two go back. WAY back.
Zucker as head of NBC Entertainment signed off on “The Apprentice” and has had an ego about it ever since.
Never mind that Trump was already a billionaire. Never mind that his name was already a national brand.
And never mind that Trump had been toying with the idea of a presidential run for decades.
Zucker managed to make it all about himself.
During one salary negotiation with Trump over the show, the future president asked to be paid in line with the stars of “Friends,” NBC’s other hit show at the time.
Zucker pointed out “The Apprentice” enhanced the Trump brand, as if NBC was doing him a favor.
“You should be paying us,” he told Trump, according to a 2016 report in The New York Times.
Zucker, if he’s running, would join one of the most crowded Democratic fields in generations.
Old has-beens including former Vice President Joe Biden, failed 2016 candidate Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) could all vie for the nomination — along with TV grandstanders such as Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY).
And of course, there’s the new generation of far leftists such as outgoing Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Tex.).
It’s not clear how serious Zucker is about running or if rank-and-file Democrats are interested in one of the media elites seizing control over their party.
But one thing IS clear: If he is even remotely serious about it, he must step down from CNN immediately.
After all, his employees can’t be expected to cover Trump fairly knowing their boss could be his future campaign rival.
Then again, this is CNN we’re talking about.
They won’t cover Trump fairly no matter who’s in charge!