Errol Louis hosted quite the circus on Monday’s Consultants Corner, with four assembled talking heads gathered to discuss Donald Trump’s horrific transition into the White House.
But the guests — who included Democrats Alexis Grenell and Eddie Castell and Republicans O’Brien “Obi” Murray and Corey Chambliss — went wildly off the established course around the 7:30 mark, after Grenell had the gall to keep talking after Murray told her to be quiet.
The other heads played their roles, examining what they presumed was the “strategy” of Trump’s appointment of Reince Priebus and White Nationalist Stephen Bannon to his cabinet. Grenell, for her part, decided she’d rather not participate in the charade.
“I’m not prepared to normalize this behavior. We’re seeing something that’s off the charts,” she told the group. “I’m not going to grade it on a scale of normalcy. I reject the idea that there’s anything normal about having a misogynist and a xenophobe and an anti-Semite and a white supremacist as your closest confidants,” she said, smiling in the same ironic way we’ve all smiled in the last week. “The entire thing has been horrifying.”
Murray, though, is not wired to process this deviation from the script. “Come on,” he interrupts, raising his arms and flapping his head wildly, like a cow resisting a fly. Why won’t Louis shut this screechy woman up? Grenell, apparently not getting the message that it’s time for Man to Speak, presses on, inserting reminders that the president-elect is an anti-Semite. Murray hates hearing this. He bellows and flaps his arms some more.
“This name calling is exactly why this country’s so split,” he spits. “If you would accept the fact that this is the new president…”
The whole tableau is representative of scenes playing out across the country: Grenell’s refusal to play ball fails to compute in Murray’s mind. The election is over — accept it, move on, grade the man’s transition on a scale from A to F. Grenell, her rage and hurt all but spilling out onto the glass table, is not prepared to discuss the remarkable fact of Trump’s presidency in quotidian terms. It’s vividly apparent that she’s had it with being talked over by men, and she’s going to get her message — that this is not normal — out, at the expense of politesse.
If she could, she’d probably grade Trump’s transition an enormous, rapacious fireball. But NY1 doesn’t have the graphics for that, and Murray doesn’t have the capacity to grasp it, either.
Grenell explained to the Voice that she felt she had to stand up to what she called “the encroaching spirit of compromise.”
“That normalizes what is a state of emergency,” she said. “That’s not hyperbole.”
Murray also had the audacity to suggest that Grenell is reducing the discussion to name-calling, which is as preposterous as it is definitionally false: Trump’s referral to “Crooked Hillary” is name-calling. Calling Bannon a racist is simply a statement of fact. As Grenell put it to us: “You don’t have to think of yourself as a racist or a bigot to be one.”
And finally, Murray’s ludicrous conclusion is that Trump is taking the time to “make the right decisions.”
Yes. That is what he’s…taking his time…to do.
If the election were based on total popular vote I would have campaigned in N.Y. Florida and California and won even bigger and more easily
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 15, 2016