ROLAND S. MARTIN: Trump As Debate Moderator Is An Absolute Joke

By Roland S. Martin

Earlier this week it was reported that former NBA slam-dunk champion Anthony “Spud” Webb was planning to become head coach of Rick Cabaret’s New York stripper basketball team.

From the moment I read it, I cracked up laughing, knowing full well that my long-time friend and golf buddy, who also happens to be president of basketball operations for the NBA’s Texas development league team, the Legends, would never do such a thing. The press release was a joke.

I even left him a voicemail Wednesday saying it was funny and ridiculous at the same time, and the next day his publicist released a statement calling it an “ill-fated attempt at humor.”

No harm, no foul, Spud, and anyone taking it seriously needs to learn to laugh.

So when I began to see tweets Friday about the maniacal real estate mogul Donald Trump moderating a Republican presidential debate in Iowa on Dec. 27, I had the same reaction as the Spud strip team press release: This is a bad joke.

But according to the conservative website, they really have asked Trump to be the moderator of a real GOP presidential debate, hoping the men and women who desire to be commander-in-chief will show up to be quizzed by a reality TV show star.

If this “debate” is real, it will represent one of the stupidest ideas in the history of presidential politics, and if the Republican National Committee has any decency, it would quickly denounce this madness and say that none of its candidates will bother even responding to this stunt.

As I’ve written before, Donald Trump is a political chump who shouldn’t be taken seriously. To watch all of these GOP candidates make a pilgrimage to meet with him is ridiculous. It’s not like he’s disgraced former President Richard Nixon, who often hosted candidates wanting to discuss foreign policy, especially as it related to China.

The only thing the late Nixon and Trump have in common is that both are disgraceful.

It’s time that real Republicans and conservatives put an end to this silly infatuation with Trump. It’s highly questionable as to whether he’s actually a billionaire. His ideas about politics are about as useful as Flavor Flav’s marital advice. And discussing the issue of character and the presidency would make Trump a laughingstock to the world.

But let’s just call this what it is: a publicity stunt by Newsmax to gain more subscribers to its growing media empire and for Trump to bask in the glow of being taken seriously by candidates who want to occupy the White House.

If we’ve reduced the presidency of the United States to a reality show, we deserve to get our butts kicked economically by China, and we might as well let Russia become the world’s biggest superpower.

Any candidate who would even consider showing up to take questions from Trump should have his or her head examined — and then be summarily booted out of the race.

In fact, you know what? Let’s go ahead and let Trump moderate a debate. This will allow us to quickly narrow the field of candidates, “Survivor”-style. Any candidates who show up to get quizzed by Trump we’ll immediately vote off the GOP presidential island. There is no way anyone could take them seriously.

Sorry, folks. Let’s not even toy with the idea of Trump moderating a NewsMax debate. I’d rather tune in to strippers playing basketball than see the GOP presidential candidates stripped of their dignity.

Roland S. Martin is an award-winning CNN analyst and author of the book “The First: President Barack Obama’s Road to the White House as Originally Reported by Roland S. Martin.” Please visit his website at To find out more about Roland S. Martin and read his past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at


  • Herman Cain in 1st column since leaving Presidential Race -WND

    You’re not defeated as long as you never stop fighting. And while my presidential campaign is suspended, it’s important to remember that my pursuit of the presidency was only a means to an end. As long as the end is achieved, victory will be at hand.

    My incredible army of supporters, whom I can never thank enough for all they have done so far, have not labored in vain. The real prize is still ours for the taking.

    I did not want to become president just for the sake of being president. I’m perfectly happy with what I’ve accomplished in my life, and I don’t need the ego boost. Rather, I sought the presidency because our nation has some big problems to deal with, and it’s clear that our political class has neither the will nor the ability to solve them.

    For that very reason, I was not surprised that I was viciously attacked once I rose in the polls. I was surprised by the nature of the attacks. Me, a womanizer? I would never have thought they’d come up with that one. But I knew the establishment would not like the idea of my success, because I will not get along by going along like so many do. I will not kick the can down the road to the next generation of leaders, because our problems are serious and they need to be solved now.

    That threatens people who know there may be a political price to pay for enacting solutions that will work, and would rather wait things out and let someone else take the heat. That would not have been possible during a Cain presidency.

    But if real solutions are achieved, it will not matter who achieved them. If Congress and the president take the right measures to ensure our fiscal strength, protect our national security, achieve energy independence, spur economic growth and accomplish health-care reform that actually works – it won’t matter to me whose signature is on the bills. Only that the bills become laws that get us to the goal.

    And while I am disappointed, there are more than a few silver linings to doing this work outside the context of a presidential campaign. The process by which we choose our nation’s leader is ridiculous. There is little focus on policy substance and even less on candidates’ governing skills. If you’re not warding off some wild accusation, you’re explaining away a “gaffe,” which is usually the sort of slip of the tongue that anyone can make, but because some reporter heard it, it turns into a news-cycle narrative with a shelf life of six or seven days.

    That’s behind us. All I need to do now is advocate for solutions that work, under the auspices of, and that will have two essential elements.

    One is to better educate the American people about the nature of the problems we face. There is still too little understanding of the severity of our debt and fiscal crisis. That is why members of Congress lack the political will to solve the problem. They perceive that they will pay a steeper price for taking action than they will pay for doing nothing. That is no excuse for such poor leadership, but the fact remains that if we can change the political dynamic – so that the people are demanding action rather than rewarding inaction – we will be able to change the results.

    The second element is to advocate for solutions that actually work. I was amused by the criticism I received for frequently mentioning my 9-9-9 tax reform, particularly by those who referred to it as a “catch phrase” and so forth, clearly demonstrating that they didn’t grasp what it’s all about. The 9-9-9 plan is the biggest transfer of power from government back to the people since the beginning of this nation. That’s what they are afraid of.

    I talked about 9-9-9 so often during the campaign because it’s a major reform that would completely change the way we pay taxes, the way we do business and the way people manage their personal budgets. We need reform like that. Political consultants are forever telling candidates to “stay on message,” but I guess that doesn’t apply when the message is a substantive reform that would actually solve problems. Be that as it may, I am far from finished staying on message. The Cain Solutions effort will relentlessly push for an understanding of the real stakes our nation faces, and for a groundswell that demands real solutions.

    As I said during my announcement on Saturday, becoming president was Plan A. Anyone with a big goal needs to recognize that you might need a Plan B, and our Plan B has a lot going for it.

    Six months ago, most of you had never heard of me. You have now. A lot of what you’ve heard is not true, but I’ve got your attention. Keep listening, and if you care about the future of our country like I do, get involved. Unlike a presidential campaign, what we’re doing now can’t be stopped by scandal-mongering or polls. We’ll only be defeated if we give up.

    And we’re not going to do that.