Fox & Friends host Steve Doocy said Monday that Donald Trump’s rationale for skipping the GOP primary debates could wind up helping President Joe Biden, arguing that Biden could ultimately deploy the same excuse to get out of debating Trump if he secures the 2024 Republican nomination.
On Sunday, the former president cited a CBS poll showing that his lead over his nearest GOP rival has continued to grow even as criminal charges pile up against him. In light of his current dominance, Trump said he “WILL THEREFORE NOT BE DOING THE DEBATES!” in a post on his Truth Social platform, implying that he plans to skip not just the first debate Wednesday night on Fox News but subsequent debates too.
“Unfortunately, by skipping the debates… Donald Trump may actually be helping Joe Biden,” Doocy said Monday morning on Fox & Friends. “Because he’s giving Joe Biden an excuse for not debating Donald Trump. That’s one of the things that [Republican National Committee Chairwoman] Ronna McDaniel told the former president when she was trying to get him to do the first debate, but he said, ‘Nope, not gonna do it.’”
Doocy’s co-host Brian Kilmeade looked nonplussed at Doocy’s line of reasoning. “I don’t know how that would be, though,” Kilmeade said. “How could Joe Biden rationalize not going against Donald Trump?”
“Because if Donald Trump says ‘everybody knows me, I don’t need to do it,’ then Joe Biden goes ‘everybody knows me, I’m president!’” Doocy said. Kilmeade seemed unconvinced. “I mean, if [Biden] doesn’t want to do the debate, I can totally understand it because he can’t get through a sentence,” he said. “If you watched him over the weekend just slur his way through that mini-summit, and who knows what’s going to happen in Hawaii.”
According to The New York Times, Trump decided to ditch the Fox News-hosted debate in Milwaukee on Wednesday in favor of doing an interview with former Fox star Tucker Carlson instead. It appears to be a calculated attempt to annoy Fox following the former president’s recent gripes with the network—and Fox & Friends specifically—for “purposely” airing the “absolutely worst pictures” of him and not broadcasting the polls he wants it to show.
It’s not yet clear which Republican candidates will be involved in the debate, though on Sunday former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson became the latest to announce that he had met the requirements needed to qualify.