Glenn recently had the opportunity to sit down with the editorial board of The New York Times for an enlightening conversation.
"So I don't want to quote anything that they said or take anything and make them look one way or another," Glenn told radio listeners Tuesday. "I will tell you that the thrust of the conversation was, who is your audience? Who are the people of the Tea Party, and are those people the same people that are supporting Donald Trump? And what happened if they are?"
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From Glenn's perspective, those he met with appeared to have a keen and genuine interest in understanding what was happening in the country, particularly on the right. Could this signal a step toward bridging the divide and bringing people together?
Read below or watch the clip for answers to these questions:
• How did Glenn describe members of the Tea Party?
• Did Glenn adequately express the frustration felt by conservative Americans?
• Had the editorial board ever heard the truth about conservative Tea Party patriots?
• Did Glenn kiss a frog or a toad?
• What would make conservatives lose their credibility?
Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:
GLENN: I met with a New York Times editorial board yesterday, and it was all on background. So I don't want to quote anything that they said or -- or -- or take anything and -- and make them look one way or another.
I will tell you that the -- the thrust of the conversation was, who -- who are -- who is your audience? Who -- who are the people of the Tea Party, and are those people -- are those people the same people that are supporting Donald Trump? And what happened if they are?
To be able to sit with all of the editors of the New York Times and say, "Look, here's what happened: The press mocked, belittled, called them racist, called them dangerous, called them names, when these were families who came so far out of their comfort zone because they actually believed in something."
These aren't Marxists. These aren't revolutionaries in college. These are the people who just put their face in a book during college and did it and didn't get involved in any of that stuff. Have never done any of that their entire life. Have lived a law-abiding quiet life.
And then they saw in justice, they saw things that they thought were wrong. And the press immediately said they were dangerous. And then, riding in on a white horse, to their rescue was -- who? The G.O.P. And Mitch McConnell and John Boehner. Come. You are such great friends. We needed you. And we then had a historic election for the G.O.P. and sent Tea Party people there. And those very people in the establishment turned those people against us.
And nothing changed. And then Mitt Romney, in 2012. And it was between 2010 and a week after the election of 2012 that everybody who was part of that movement said, "There's no way to win. Nothing is going to change. We've been defeated. There's nothing we can do."
And then a new man rode into town, who said, "I'm your defender. I'll crush them." And what he was promising or what his record was, wasn't as important as finally getting somebody to stand up who will refuse to sit down and will burn the whole damn thing down because the whole thing is corrupt. That's what happened.
It has nothing to do with racism or anything else. That's a subset.
That's not who these people are. They're tired, and they're frustrated. And they've looked for someone who can finally tell people like you, "Shut up. That's not who we are."
I don't think those people had heard that before.
PAT: How did they respond to that?
GLENN: They were amazing. They were amazing. And I don't --
PAT: It really sunk in, you think?
GLENN: Yeah, I do. For some. I do. There were 19 people in the room. I don't know. I didn't get a chance to talk to them. But I will tell you that it was not what I expected.
And, you know, people were blasting me on Facebook saying, "You know, you just went to bash Trump." No. Not really. Uh-uh. They weren't really that interested in Donald Trump. They were interested in who you are.
Now, I think, personally -- nothing to base this on, but I think personally, they know that the world is changing. They see trouble on the horizon, and like all of us, they may be saying now, "Gosh, it's a different world. It's a different game, make we should reexamine everything we're doing.
I don't know that. But that's the feeling I got. And here's why -- here's one of the reasons why I said yes to going up and meeting with them.
When I was at RedState this summer, somebody from the New York Times -- I didn't know they were from the New York Times, somebody in the press gaggle asked two questions. I don't even remember what they were. But they were thoughtful. They were really thoughtful questions. And I answered those questions.
And I wondered where she was from. And I thought she was from a -- a right side organization. And they were very smart questions. And she came up to me afterwards and asked a couple of other questions. I said, "Who are you with?" She said, "The New York Times." I said, "The New York Times?" She said, "Yes. We're trying to understand what's happening." Now, she's a documentary filmmaker. So we spent some time talking off the record. Her family is from, I think, Louisiana or Arkansas. They're Republicans. I think they're Trump supporters.
She's not. But she wasn't virulent either way. She was just like, "You know, I don't know. I'm not a Trump supporter, but my family is." She understood the center of the country, like no one else I've met in media.
And she said, "Would you be a part of this short documentary?" And I said, "I think so. But I don't know how it's going to be edited."
PAT: That was the problem, isn't it?
GLENN: Yeah, no, it is. But it was edited. And it was fair. It was fair. It was like eight minutes. But it was very fair.
And represented our side very well.
Yesterday, after it was all over, I was talking to her producer and somebody else from the New York Times, and they said, "Thank you for being a part of that." And I said, "I have to tell you, I was really skeptical." And they said, "We are really trying to understand. We're trying -- we don't want to be flippant on things." I said, "Oh, I know that feeling. Yes."
"We're really trying to understand." And they said, "The best thing about that is that -- now, this is key.
Said, "Did you read any of the comments underneath that when it first went out?"
And I said, "No."
And she said, "It was really good." She said, "So many of your people said, I can't believe this is the New York Times." And she said, "And so many of the New York Times people said, I can't believe there are conservatives like this. I didn't know they existed."
That is critical.
GLENN: If we're going to heal the country, that's critical.
Now, whether the New York Times or anybody else continues this the day after the election, I'm assuming I just kissed a frog. I'm assuming I just kissed a toad, hoping that they would be a princess. And they're not going to be a princess. That's how I have to go into this.
Anything that you get on the other side where you go, "Oh, my gosh. Look at that. It's tiny movement." Is a blessing. But we have to start doing that. We have to start looking for anybody who is actually willing to stand. And what I recommended to the New York Times -- I recommended, first of all, that Hillary Clinton, if she was serious about bringing the country together, that she said, "I'm not -- at this point in the country's history, I'm not going to replace a Scalia with a Ginsburg. I'm going to replace a Scalia with Mike Lee. A conservative constitutionalist with a conservative constitution."
PAT: She won't do that. But even if she did, a moderate --
GLENN: To be able to say that, in the New York Times and explain the thinking behind it --
GLENN: -- I thought was important.
GLENN: I said, "If she's serious, then de-weaponize the IRS." That, she could do. It was wrong when Nixon did it. I don't want to get into the past. But it's wrong now.
De-weaponize the IRS. Her side -- I said, "The only way that it will make any difference is if she hurts her own self with her side. If her side isn't screaming, 'What are you doing,' it won't mean anything to the left -- to the right. They won't believe it."
GLENN: And even if she does it, they'll still say, "There's a catch." But it will come in a long-term pattern. Did that really do what she said it would do? And if it doesn't, it makes it worse.
But the reason why I came up with this, you know, Watergate begat Travelgate is because I said the other thing is -- and it won't mean anything coming from people on our side. What means something to the right -- to the left is us on the right standing up and saying, "Here's the infection point on our side. Here are the things we have to take care of." We can't say we're for morals and we don't hate women and then stand with a guy who says, "Come on. Tell me she hasn't been grabbed there a few times in the past." Holy cow. He actually said that yesterday.
We can't accept that. Forget about them. But we'll have no credibility with anyone. And the same thing with them.
I said, "What have you -- by ignoring, what has the left promised us now that she can get away with?" You have to take a hard line on corruption, no matter who wins. You have to take a hard line on corruption. And I don't know -- I don't know what their thinking was. And I wouldn't want to characterize it either way. But I have hope that they will see and say, "We do to have take a hard line." The times have changed.
Featured Image: People walk past The New York Times building on October 1, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)