POTUS calls conspiracy theorist profiled by Megyn Kelly “a nice guy”
The recent backlash against Megyn Kelly and NBC for interviewing Alex Jones has renewed the spotlight on the host of conservative show "Info Wars." Kelly said in a statement
Tuesday that she wanted to interview Jones because of his ties with President Donald Trump. Here's a breakdown of their relationship.
Trump and Jones began a relationship on Trump's campaign trail, and have peddled some of the same conspiracy theories, according to Mother Jones
. Perhaps Trump's most popular conspiracy theory is that President Barack Obama wasn't born in the United States (he was), a theory also perpetuated by Jones.
In December 2015, Trump was a guest on Jones' show
. Jones introduced Trump as "a maverick" who "tells it like it is." Jones opened the show by praising Trump for taking attacks from media outlets like the Washington Post and the New York Post. Jones theorizes that the attacks on 9/11 were a hoax; it was surprising that a Republican candidate would go on a show whose host postures that the previous Republican president was part of such an elaborate hoax.
At a January 2016 campaign event, Trump called Jones "a nice guy
In February 2016, senior policy advisor to Trump Stephen Miller appeared on "Info Wars," and repeatedly spoke to Jones' audience asking for support. "If you want to stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership, if you want to close the border, if you want to protect American jobs and wages, then you have to support Donald J. Trump," Miller said
"Hillary for prison" became the rallying cry at the 2016 Republican National Convention. The phrase was initially found on merchandise on the "Info Wars" website. Jones was a "special guest
" at the convention.
Trump continued to parrot Jones' ideas. Last August, Jones said, "It is surreal to talk about issues here on air, and then word-for-word hear Trump say it two days later."
Also last August, Jones said on his show that he personally talked to Trump
and encouraged him to push the idea that the election would be rigged. Trump did end up pushing this idea. "I'm afraid the election's going to be rigged. I have to be honest," Trump said at an Ohio campaign stop
In November 2016, Trump's advisor Roger Stone told the Washington Post that Jones would be a "valuable asset
" to Trump.
After the election, Jones said in an "Info Wars" video
that Trump called him to thank him. "I wanted to talk to you to thank your audience," Jones said the then-president-elect told him.
Even Hillary Clinton weighed in on Trump's reliance on Jones for ideas throughout the campaign, and released an attack ad
featuring Jones. "This is what Trump listens to," says the ad as Jones talks about chemicals put in the water to make people gay.
Jones' website is full of references to "presstitutes
," and discredits news organizations like NPR and CNN. Trump is known for discrediting several news organizations. For example, in February he called
the media "the enemy."