Jeffrey Lord on Being ‘Set Up’ by Sacha Baron Cohen: ‘Unwitting In-Kind Contribution to the Trump Campaign’

Former CNN contributor recalls his own encounter with Cohen for new Showtime show “Who Is America?”

Former CNN contributor Jeffrey Lord says he too was a target of Sacha Baron Cohen latest undercover stunt-comedy venture “Who is America?”

Lord told TheWrap, however, that he didn’t mind being “set up” and thought his appearance on the new Showtime series would only help President Donald Trump in his 2020 re-election bid.

“I’m writing a book about the elites vs. Trump folks. This Cohen series is exactly the kind of thing that plays into the beliefs of Trump supporters re: elites hating them etc,” Lord wrote via email, noting that extreme denunciations by Hollywood liberals like Cohen or Robert De Niro can be counterproductive.

“I have long since come to believe that things like this Showtime bit or De Niro etc. are in essence unwitting in-kind contributions to the Trump campaign,” he said,

Lord described how his own encounter with Cohen went down, telling TheWrap that he received an inquiry from Showtime for a new series. “Regular folk interviewing experts was the theme,” he said.

Lord came into a studio outside Washington, D.C., under the pretense that he would be interviewed by a passionate Trump supporter –which he said turned out to be Cohen, although he didn’t recognize him at the time.

“A burly guy in plaid or other shirt, with suspenders as I recall. Massive blonde hair, shoulder length, beard to match,” he described him.

In his email, Lord — who also writes regularly for the American Spectator as a contributing editor — described the encounter:

My first thought? I am being set up. This is Showtime’s/Hollywood’s idea of what a Trump supporter is. Second thought…too late. Relax. Have fun. No thought of Sacha Baron Cohen. So on we go. Among other things he fulminated about supposed “charges” that Trump was in to prostitutes. He shows me a photo of Trump with a young girl. It is….Ivanka. I politely point this out. He railed against everything from the studio set up and more that I can’t recall, always presenting himself as pro-Trump and indignant. He had a “son” who would appear to calm his “Dad” down. Sitting almost knee-to-knee with the guy I am looking intently at the very dark eyes and the rest. I had the obvious thought that the hair and beard were make-up. It simply didn’t add up. Oh well, I thought. I am taking care of my then-soon-to-be 99 year old Mom. I have long ago learned what is important in life and what is not. This is silly. I have a sense of humor, a good one at that. This will disappear once shown in a nanosecond. Once done I walked outside with the Showtime staffers and burst out laughing. And got paid! Thank you Showtime! The joke is on them!

Lord was once a regular guest on CNN, where he typically would be the only panelist on air to defend Trump. His combative and forceful performances earned praise from Trump world.

Lord was ultimately pushed off the air after tweeting “Sieg Heil” at Media Matters president Angelo Carusone during a lengthy thread between the two. CNN dropped him within hours.