Conservative commentator and outspoken Trump critic Dennis Prager has admitted he was “wrong” to oppose Donald Trump during the 2016 Republican primaries.
Speaking on his radio show Thursday, Prager noted that Trump was his very last choice among the the Republican candidates who sought their party’s nomination, though he did support the former businessman over Hillary Clinton in the general election.
But Prager’s initial fears regarding a Trump administration have been alleviated now that he has watched the president’s first year in office. In fact, he said Trump has been a “great president,” despite his “communication flaws.”
“I was wrong,” Prager said, according to Breitbart News. “My opposition to Donald Trump was wrong, in retrospect.”
Prager said that at first, he was put off by Trump’s “over-the-top statements,” like when the then-candidate suggested Arizona Sen. John McCain was not a hero because he got captured during the Vietnam War.
However, according to Prager, even Trump’s often “objectionable” statements show that he “doesn’t give a d— about what the press says about him.”
“That is the only way to govern. It is the only way to advance the principles of conservatism in the United States is to not give a d—,” the radio host continued.
Prager went on to compare Trump’s temperament to that of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney — the 2012 GOP presidential nominee — who he said would have been far too concerned with how members of the media perceived him.
“Would I like Donald Trump to have Mitt Romney’s temperament, or for that matter Barack Obama’s temperament? Yeah,” Prager acknowledged. “So what? I would like a whole host of things. People are packages. What a president does is more important to me than a president’s demeanor.”
Trump, he said, “is so much better a president than Mitt Romney would’ve made.” Though he admitted that a Romney victory in 2012 would have been better than the alternative — four more years of former President Barack Obama — Prager still thinks Romney would have been a “tepid” leader.
“Nothing comparably conservative compared to Donald Trump,” he added.
Prager indicated that despite the issues he has with Trump’s temperament, he places greater importance on his performance in office. In that respect, he’s pleased.
“He has turned out to be a great president with big communication flaws, in the way he tweets and some of the things he says and his temperament,” the host said.
“My temperament is the opposite. I love dignity. I love understatement. OK, so be it. So what? I’m not sure I’d be as good a president as he. How do you like that? That’s how good he’s been.”
It’s not the first time Prager has expressed how grateful he is that Trump was elected president.
“Do conservatives — or non-leftists, for that matter — appreciate just how terrific Donald Trump has been as president?” he wrote in an April 2017 column posted to his website.
“What I do know is that they ought to be deeply appreciative of him, and deeply grateful for luck or providence, and certainly for Trump himself, that he was elected president,” he added, not just because Trump defeated Clinton, but because his conservative principles rival those of former Presidents Ronald Reagan and Calvin Coolidge.
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