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Cockburn

Hunting Hollywood’s secret Republicans with Will and Grace

Who might get the call for a Beverly Hills Trump fundraiser?

September 4, 2019

11:37 AM

4 September 2019

11:37 AM

When the revolution comes, Trump-supporting elites will be first against the wall. And the stars of Will and Grace will be keeping them there.

After a Hollywood Reporter story revealed that President Trump planned to appear at a Beverly Hills fundraiser during Emmys week, comrade Eric McCormack, who plays Will, tweeted ‘Hey, @THR, kindly report on everyone attending this event, so the rest of us can be clear about who we don’t wanna work with. Thx.’

His co-star, Resistance renegade Debra Messing, who plays Grace, joined his call-to-arms, writing ‘Please print a list of all attendees please. The public has a right to know.’

The tweets caused uproar over the Labor Day weekend with the pair of thespians accused of wanting a blacklist. Matters escalated when the president noticed Messing’s message on the golf course, responding ‘I have not forgotten that when it was announced that I was going to do The Apprentice, and when it then became a big hit, helping NBC’s failed lineup greatly, @DebraMessing came up to me at an Upfront & profusely thanked me, even calling me “Sir.” How times have changed!’

After complaining about her ‘phone notifications going crazy’, the actress doubled down, writing ‘I am proud to be a donor when I contribute to a campaign. I am happy to be listed when I attend a fundraiser. I am assuming anyone who donates to Trump’s fundraiser would feel the same. Why wouldn’t they?’

Inevitably, the retreat came yesterday, when McCormack wrote on Instagram, ‘I want to be clear about my social media post from last week, which has been misinterpreted in a very upsetting way. I absolutely do not support blacklists or discrimination of any kind, as anyone who knows me would attest. I’d simply like to understand where Trump’s major donations are coming from, which is a matter of public record. I am holding myself responsible for making educated and informed decisions that I can morally and ethically stand by and to do that, transparency is essential.’ Messing shared his message on her Instagram profile too.

Cockburn has several questions. Firstly, in whose frazzled mind does asking an entertainment magazine to ‘print a list of all the attendees’ and ‘kindly report on everyone attending this event, so the rest of us can be clear about who we don’t wanna work with’ not constitute a blacklist? But perhaps more interestingly…which celebrities would actually make the cut for a Beverly Hills Trump fundraiser?

The GOP took a big hit on the West Coast in the 2018 midterms…but its major cities are in dire straits with tent cities and excrement on the streets. Could previously-NeverTrump Republicans see this and be tempted back into the fold?

There are a few definites on the list already, Cockburn would assume. Scott Baio, aka Chachi from Happy Days, must be a shoe-in. The same goes for other dyed-in-the-wool Trump loyalists, like Terms of Endearment actor James Woods, Robert Davi from Die HardClueless star Stacey Dash and Buffy actress Kristy Swanson, internet personality Dan Bilzerian Pussycat Doll Kaya Jones and her fellow singer Joy Villa, Pirates of the Caribbean producer Jerry Bruckheimer and General Hospital actor Antonio Sabato Jr., who ran unsuccessfully for a House seat in 2016.

What about the maybes though? The stars who could be tempted into the fold? Ray Donovan star Jon Voight is a long-standing Trump devotee…could his politics pass down a generation to his daughter Angelina Jolie?

A few of the Charmed witches, Rose McGowan and Alyssa Milano have become #Resistance figureheads…but might their co-star Shannen Doherty get the call-up? The actress is a registered Republican who appeared at the ’92 convention.

Of course just down the road from Beverly Hills is Calabasas, home to Kanye West, the most notorious Trump fan in popculture. But another member of the extended Kardashian dynasty has MAGA ties: Caitlyn Jenner voted for Trump in 2016. Though she’s opposed the president’s stance on trans people in the military and bathroom laws, when it comes to crunch time, is it so unthinkable that she’d fall in line with her ex-stepson?

And as it’s the US Open at the moment, it’s worth remembering that Pete Sampras backed John McCain in 2008. He might be tempted to serve up some of his career winnings to the party once more.

Then there are those actors who seem to fit the profile of a Trumpster, even if they aren’t so forthcoming. Avowed conservative Tim Allen attended the president’s inauguration, but has remained hesitant about offering full-throated support.

Chris Pratt, star of Guardians of the Galaxy, is an evangelical Christian from the Midwest who wears ‘don’t tread on me‘ t-shirts and just married into a Republican dynasty. Obviously coming out as a right-winger wouldn’t suit the progressive Disney-Marvel agenda, but that doesn’t mean Pratt couldn’t surreptitiously attend a fundraiser, given the cues he’s been dropping. Presumably it’s figures like him that Messing and McCormack are watching with bated breath…

Got a tip for Cockburn? Email cockburn@spectator.us.


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