On Thursday night, after TJ Ducklo, national press secretary for the Biden campaign, had been interviewed by Fox News anchor Brett Baier, who provided the opportunity for Ducklo to rant imperiously and display his refusal to answer certain basic questions Baier fired at him, former Interim National Security Advisor Ric Grenell suggested that Ducklo be given full access to appear on TV, tweeting, “Keep @TDucklo on TV! He’s our best spokesman.”
Keep @TDucklo on TV! He’s our best spokesman. https://t.co/VUr7lSM7XV
— Richard Grenell (@RichardGrenell) September 11, 2020
The interview started with Baier querying, “I want to start with what the former vice-president specifically would have done at the end of January had he received the briefing that we know now the president received January 28.”
Ducklo began his odyssey into deflection and avoidance by replying:
Sure. We know here we are in the United States of America; we are 4% of the world’s population. We are 20% of the COVID cases. We are 25% of the COVID deaths. We now know from Bob Woodward’s reporting, as you just covered, that this president knowingly and willfully lied about the dangerousness of the threat that faced this country. We know from Columbia University, had this president taken action just a few weeks earlier, we would have tens of thousands of lives that would have been saved. You know, while the president was out there calling it a hoax, while he was saying the virus would magically disappear, he knew. He knew Brett, how dangerous the threat that we are facing was. Joe Biden, from the very beginning, in March has put out very clear plans about what he would do to get our country where we need to be.
Baier, unperturbed, tried again: “But I’m talking about in January. Because here are his two top advisors, two of them, that he listens to closely, (former Biden chief of staff) Ron Klain and (Obamacare architect) Zeke Emanuel, on January 28 and January 30.
Baier played a clip of an interviewer asking Klain, “Would you ban Chinese travelers from arriving in the United States?”
Klayne answered, “I wouldn’t. I think that’s premature.” The next clip showed Emanuel pontificating, “Everyone in America should take a very big breath, slow down, and stop panicking and being hysterical.”
Baier: It goes on; they continue to make comments that “masks are not necessary at the moment,” “This is overreaction,” that goes into February and early March. So understanding that those are the people he listens to, and Joe Biden has said he wouldn’t have closed the travel from China, what specifically would the former vice-president have done?”
Ducklo claimed, “Let’s get a few things straight. The vice president was not against the travel ban, first of all.”
Baier: He wasn’t?
Ducklo, deflecting, “Let’s remember an important distinction. Donald Trump is the president of the United States. It was on Donald Trump —“
Baier: I’m asking you if Donald Trump was the president of the United States. If he was —
Ducklo: It was on Donald Trump to take action to actually take action to protect the American people.
After Ducklo ranted further, Baier asked calmly, “Are you saying Joe Biden was for closing travel to China when the president did it?”
Ducklo deflected again, “Joe Biden has been clear that he was no against that travel ban.”
Baier, pressing: “He was for it?”
Ducklo: Joe Biden has been clear about this.
Later, Baier asked, “Has Joe Biden ever used a teleprompter during local interviews or to answer Q&A with supporters?”
Ducklo snapped, “Bret, we are not going to eng —, this is, this is straight from the Trump campaign talking points.”
“Well, yeah, they’re using it,” Baier responded.
Ducklo accused, “And what it does, and what it does, Bret, is it’s trying to distract the American people.”
“They’re using it; they talk about it every day. Cn you say ‘yes’ or ‘no’?” Baier pressed.
“They talk about it every day, Bret, because they don’t have a coherent strategy—” Ducklo continued.
“Well, you haven’t answered,” Baier pressed. “Yes or no?”
After Ducklo continued to rant, Baier responded, “I understand, but you can’t answer the question.”
Ducklo ranted further, “Brett, I am not going to allow the Trump campaign to funnel their questions through Fox news and get me to respond to that.”