President Donald Trump had wanted to start a White House talk radio show in an effort to quell Americans’ fears about the coronavirus outbreak, but decided against it because he didn’t want to compete with Rush Limbaugh.
Trump brought up the idea in early March when he attended a meeting of the coronavirus task force, according to The New York Times.
The president explained to the panel the show would allow him to answer questions directly, the newspaper said. The calls would not be screened and would allow people to call and talk one-on-one with him.
The show was envisioned by Trump to be two hours a day, every day, the newspaper said. But the president quickly detailed one key reason he would not move ahead with the show – he did not want to encroach on Limbaugh’s territory.
Some on the room didn’t now whether Trump was joking about the show, but they knew his deference to Limbaugh was serious.
The Times said Trump keenly appreciates the extent of Limbaugh’s reach and the fact that it offers a metric on the president’s decisions and what the public thinks of them. And it noted Limbaugh is among Trump’s most influential supporters.
Limbaugh recently called criticism of Trump’s handling the virus crisis “a political hit job,” the Times noted.
The radio talk show host received the Presidential Medal of Freedom during Trump’s State of the Union address in February. Earlier, Limbaugh had announced he was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.
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