Fox News has pleaded with Trump to participate in the Republican primary debate that it is hosting.
“Former President Trump had dinner Tuesday with top executives at Fox News who asked him to consider attending the first Republican primary debate later this month, according to a new report,” The Hill reported last week.
The dinner, which The New York Times reported took place at Trump’s Bedminster, N.J., Golf Club, was with Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott and network President Jay Wallace. Prime-time anchor Sean Hannity was also reportedly supposed to attend the dinner but was busy hosting his 9 p.m. show.
Scott and Wallace reportedly made an overture to Trump telling him attending the event, which Fox will broadcast Aug. 23 from Milwaukee, could present an opportunity for the former president to show his debate skills. The Times story noted people close to Trump have separately warned the former president in recent weeks that not showing up to the first debate could allow another candidate to perform well.
Trump has not yet committed to participating in the first Republican primary debate, citing his commanding lead over the other candidates and his alleged “hostile” relationship with Fox.
Trump announced on Wednesday of this week that he would not sign an oath of allegiance in support of the eventual Republican nominee.
To be eligible to partake in the initial primary debate, which will air on Fox News on August 23, all candidates must sign the vow.
Donald Trump, the leading Republican presidential candidate, has previously indicated he may not attend the debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and his statements to Newsmax on Wednesday are the clearest indication yet that he will likely not attend.
“I wouldn’t sign the pledge. Why would I sign a pledge if there are people on there that I wouldn’t have?” Eric Bolling of Newsmax was told by Trump.
“I can name three or four people that I wouldn’t support for president. So right there, there’s a problem,” he remarked.
Trump asserts that Asa Hutchinson, the former governor of Arkansas, and Chris Christie, the former governor of New Jersey, both of whom are ardent Trump opponents, will “ask me nasty questions” during the debate.
He claimed that Sen. Tim Scott (R–South Carolina) and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy were both “very nice… very capable” and “very good people, but why would you do that when you’re leading by so much?”
Trump stated that he will determine his attendance at the first debate next week.
He continued, “I haven’t totally ruled it out.”
In recent months, the former president has used his website Truth Social to attack Fox.
Fox’s top political anchor, Bret Baier, will moderate the first debate with Martha MacCallum, and Trump has criticized the concept of answering queries in a debate setting.
In June, however, Baier conducted an extensive interview with Trump. After the interview, he referred to Baier as “nasty” and claimed that the reporter had not provided him with sufficient support.
The New York Times cites sources who characterize the Tuesday dinner between Donald Trump and Fox executives as “cordial.”
The meeting took place mere hours after Trump was charged on four counts in federal court for his efforts to challenge the outcome of the 2020 election, which Democrats claim led to the violence on January 6, 2021, at the U.S. Capitol.
On Thursday morning, Trump posted about Fox News and another Republican presidential candidate who had withdrawn.
“Will Hurd, a former Republican Congressman who couldn’t get elected “dog catcher,” so he dropped out of the Race, is constantly on Fox spewing nonsense, despite the fact he is at ZERO in the Polls, and with no money or future. No wonder Fox’s Ratings are going down the tubes!” Trump posted on Truth Social.
Just prior to that, Trump posted about the election and Democrat efforts to stop him.
“Look, it’s not my fault that my political opponent in the Democrat Party, Crooked Joe Biden, has told his Attorney General to charge the leading (by far!) Republican Nominee & former President of the United States, me, with as many crimes as can be concocted so that he is forced to spend large amounts of time & money to defend himself. The Dems don’t want to run against me or they would not be doing this unprecedented weaponization of “Justice.” BUT SOON, IN 2024, IT WILL BE OUR TURN. MAGA!”
On Wednesday, Trump railed against the politically motivated charges brought against him.
“The latest Fake “case” brought by Crooked Joe Biden & Deranged Jack Smith will hopefully be moved to an impartial Venue, such as the politically unbiased nearby State of West Virginia! IMPOSSIBLE to get a fair trial in Washington, D.C., which is over 95% anti-Trump, & for which I have called for a Federal TAKEOVER in order to bring our Capital back to Greatness. It is now a high crime embarrassment to our Nation and, indeed, the World. This Indictment is all about Election Interference!!!” he posted on TS.