I'm really not sure what kind of fealty Anthony Scaramucci expected to receive when he appeared on Tiffany Cross' show, but suffice it to say, he didn't get it, and he wasn't happy.
Settle in, kids, this is gonna be a doozy.
On Cross Connection, Ms. Cross introduced him by saying that "for all intents and purposes," he'd been "radicalized," and she wanted him to explain how he became "un-radicalized." She played a number of clips from a few years ago of Scaramucci, first denigrating Trump before he was elected, then suddenly fawning over him as his Press Secretary. Cross made it clear she didn't want anything to do with sanitizing "people who rocked really hard with Trump and then thought better of it later," but she did want his advice on what he thought we should do about people who are still drinking the Trump kool-aid.
Granted, that's not the friendliest way to start off an interview, but if I'm Anthony Scaramucci and I have done my homework, I understand I'm walking into the fire when I agree to be interviewed by the towering intellect that is Tiffany Cross. My homework would also have helped me understand that my white male privilege and soft appeasement of fascism is what brought about the monster vomit that was the Insurrection of January 6th.
Scaramucci didn't do his homework. He started off defending himself by disagreeing with her and telling her she's making a mistake. "I was not radicalized. I think you're making a mistake about the whole sanitization thing, because You've got 74 million people who voted for Mr. Trump and not all of them are hard-core MAGA people."
Then he proceeded to insult her, and deigned to instruct her. "If you go into that direction, with a high sanctimony or high moral righteousness, I think it's gonna be very damaging for the country going forward. You're going to keep the country split up into two pieces," Scaramucci condescended. He was just a Scaramucci away from calling her "uppity," then he rushed to exert his power over her.
She pushed back against the characterization of sanctimony and righteousness, and he simply talked over her, doing the "aggrieved victim" thing white people so often do, saying "You're going to talk over me. Go ahead. I listened to you speak. You're not going to let me speak. Go ahead."
I swear to god, Italians and Jews with the guilt and passive-aggression, it's like we cannot help ourselves, can we? "No, I'm fine, you go ahead and cut my heart out of my chest while I sit here and watch, it's okay. I'll be fine."
Thankfully, Cross doesn't fall for that manipulative BS, and counters with facts demonstrating that we always knew who Trump was before he was elected, and yet Scaramucci still chose to align himself with that man. She questioned him, "You still opted to go out there and advocate for him. You still opted to join the administration. So if you weren't radicalized, were you an opportunist?"
Scaramucci answers, "I got something wrong about Mr. Trump. I thought at age 70 he was going to be a transformative politician, and a post-partisan politician. I got that wrong." I'm sorry, you got something WRONG? You thought the man who bragged about grabbing women by the p*ssy without their permission would be transformative? You thought the monster who mocked disabled reporters at rallies would be your guy? You thought the man who positively glowed when his crowds screamed chants of "Lock Her Up!" about Hillary Clinton was going to be a "post-partisan politician?"
You think you get to just shrug, say you got something wrong, and not get challenged on that? You think you shouldn't be judged harshly for your cynical opportunism, if you are insisting you weren't radicalized? Come the f*ck on.
What makes it even worse is that then, he wants credit for changing his mind and working to make sure Trump is NOT re-elected. "I went out and did tremendous amounts of media advocacy against him and we built a coalition that defeated him. So I'm not exactly sure where you're coming from on this. What do you want to do with these people, the 74 million people that voted for Mr. Trump?"
Again, allow me to scream into the abyss, WHO built the coalition that defeated Trump? WHO, EXACTLY?
(Say it with me, kids!)
BLACK PEOPLE! Specifically, Black WOMEN.
So, here is The Mooch, wanting a pat on the head, credit, and a cookie for changing his mind about Trump after Trump fired him. Had he not been fired, would Scaramucci be helping Trump find a legal team right now? Would he be hanging out in Mar-a-Lago as we speak?
ANYWAY, he decides all he's got left is the white victim card, so he starts asking Cross, "Are you trying to sanitize me, or are you trying to condemn me? What are you trying to do on your show, are you trying to sanitize me or condemn me?" She tells him she is certainly not trying to sanitize him, but wanted to give him the chance to explain why and how he became "un-radicalized," since that what she thought he'd been. But as she tried to go to her other panel guest, Scaramucci continued to badger her, asking at least three times, "Are you trying to sanitize me, or condemn me?"
Finally, when he demanded, "No, no, I asked you a question! Just answer the question!" Cross smiled and reminded him, "Yeah, well, when you get a show, invite me on and I'll happily come on and answer your questions." Then she turned to her other guest who had much more substantive conversation to offer. Could it be anything other than white supremacy and misogynoir that made Scaramucci think he had the right to behave this way on her show?
But let's be generous for a moment, and give Scaramucci credit for knowing his own motivations. Let's say he hadn't been "radicalized." Let's say his assertion that 40-50 million of Trump's voters aren't hard-core MAGA, and deserve the "off-ramp" he's advocating. What does the "off-ramp" look and sound like, for him and the rest of them?
The off-ramp is self-reflection. The off-ramp is accountability. The off-ramp sounds nothing like Scaramucci, but a lot more like this: "You know what, Tiffany? I wasn't radicalized. I was a standard, garden-variety Republican, and what we need to acknowledge is that standard, garden-variety Republicanism upholds a racist, sexist, anti-Black history we've yet to fully recognize, embrace, and commit to dismantling. We thought Trump was our guy because he gave us permission to not only continue being that way, but to take pride in it.
"And the Republican party doesn't stand a chance of surviving unless it recognizes, repudiates, and exorcises those principles. Nor does it deserve to survive."