Wayne Allyn Root

Wayne Allyn Root Calls His Daily Show Interview a "Fraud."


Earlier today, I posted, via Mediaite, a Daily Show segment with Wayne Allyn Root, the one-time Libertarian Party office-seeker, best-selling author, and gambling/investment guru (his website is here). During the bit, Root complains against IRS profiling of anti-government taxpayers and groups but speaks in favor of profiling of certain racial, ethnic, and religious groups. It's a classic Daily Show set-up, in which the interviewer ends up looking pretty bad, though in a humorous way. I can't imagine any subject wouldn't know that's going to happen going in.

You can read that post and watch the video here.

I just received the following email from Root, which I'm happy to publish in its entirety:

I'm really surprised at you Nick.

I do over 1000 interviews annually.

The reason most hosts have me back again and again is I give great interview…and their audience loves me.

Only once in the past year has media literally committed fraud…The Daily Show.

That was a TWO HOUR interview in a broiling hot room…with bright lights hitting me in the face…

with Daily Show doing same questions over and over again…asking me to re-start my answers…or to answer slightly different…

Obviously so they could take 1 answer completely out of context…and use smiles and nods from different questions completely out of context…

That's by any definition fraud.

I wasn't there to discuss profiling. I was there only to discuss the IRS scandal. After two hours in that hot room they suddenly brought up profiling by police…

And you NEVER saw my answers, now did you?

Because I gave very fine answers…they didn't want you to hear that.

Nor did you hear me converse with the 3 guests of Muslim, African American, or Hispanic origin they brought on the show, did you?

We agreed on 90% of our discussion.

They committed FRAUD by only using the sentence or two they wanted to.

Then they left out the most important part…where they asked the Muslim woman how to resolve these difficult issues…

And she said…"I like what Wayne Root says. I think we should elect him and give him a chance to solve these problems."

After 30 minutes of discourse…a Muslim female agreed with most of what I believe and boldly supported me on camera…

And it was never shown.

Would you call that fraud? Staging? Media hypocrisy? Whatever words you'd choose…it's wrong.

My interview was a very good interview…until it turned out they only had me there to interogate me for 2 hours and use 30 seconds to stage the responses they wanted (ewith multiple takes)…and edit all of it out of context.

And you fell for it? You've obviously never had that done to you.

If you had, you'd be sick and angry.

Feel free to print my response.

I do 1000 to 1200 interviews per year…and you decide to only skewer me with ONE…and that one is a staged set-up. You wonder why the public sees the media more negatively than even politicians.

And here's a follow-up email from Root:

You might also mention the worst part of this "journalism"…where in the interview did I state I support profiling? I didn't. I stated loudly on multiple occasions in the interview that I do not support profiling based on race, religion, or any other genetic criteria. I do support Israel's system at airports…which has resulted in no successful terrorist attack EVER on an El Al airplane. America should be looking at that system and adopt the best and most realistic parts.

Israel's system is NOT based on race, but rather knowledge of terrorist's "tells." Israel has stated on many occasions that they do not profile Muslim men, as an example, because if they did a Norwegian blonde woman would be used. They look at everyone and try to analyze everything from blinking eyes to tapping feet to sweating…that might indicate a person is overly nervous. As an example they stopped my daughter on her way back from a visit to Israel last year and pulled her out of the line and asked her many questions. She is white, Jewish and American. But if she is to fly safely that is the price to pay. That is not "profiling" nor is it in any way wrong.

I stated that at least a dozen times in the interview…and told the Muslim woman sitting opposite me that I do not support her being stopped "for being Muslim" nor do I accept African Americans being stopped for DWB (Driving While Black). They should only be stopped if the police notices they are exhibiting strange actions- and that goes for me or anyone else. The color of their skin should not enter into it.

So explain to me why none of that appeared in the interview? Because those answers did notr fit the agenda of The Daily Show.

How about the when the interviewer asked the 3 guests for their opinion of me…and all 3 said something nice. The director said, "Cut. C'mon guys. This is supposed to be funny. Please say something funny or negative about Wayne. Like 'rich white guy" or "Fox News guy."

And then they turned the camera back on…and each guest said something negative about me.

And I protested. They must have realized they could not use that…because I witnessed it being staged, so they never used that.

Now do you understand the fraud and corruption of the media?

They don't report the news…they try to MAKE it, no matter who they hurt.

And when it was over…everyone from producer to reporter said what a good sport I was and I'm the only conservative willing to come on the show.

Well now we know why.

I never turn down media. I say YES to all of the invitations. I walk into the lion's den again and again. That takes great courage and chutzpah. Well I won't be saying yes to Daily Show ever again. They burned this bridge.

After a quick search of the Google, I found this 2010 piece by Root in which he calls for the abolition of the TSA, and privatized "terrorist threat profiling" by airlines while explicitly admonishing racial profiling. A snippet:

…private airlines can best prevent terrorism by adopting the Israeli model of PROFILING. No, not racial profiling, but rather "terrorist threat profiling." No need to argue—it works to perfection.

Here's an interview Matt Welch did with Wayne Allyn Root for Reason TV at the 2009 Freedom Fest (note: Root left the LP in 2012).

NEXT: Obama Called Out for Drone Due Process Promises Without Substance

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  1. So, The Daily Show remote segments are no more than mini-Michael Moore documentaries?

  2. …Mr Root, those three other people in the room were Daily Show plants to elicit the proper responses from you.

    You give 1000 interviews a year, but the Daily Show and their modus have been off your radar for 17 years?

    That’s olympic-class obliviousness, there, son.

    1. If I could go back to being ignorant of The Daily Show…

    2. It’s not just that, if he’s done thousands of interviews he must have run across this soundbite scam before. It’s so common in the media that if you see any camera cutaways you KNOW they’re doing it. Hell, I’ve had it happen to *me* and I’ve only given one press interview in my life!

      He should have known better. He should have known fifteen minutes into the hot lights session what was happening, and should have walked out right then.

  3. Daily Show doing same questions over and over again…asking me to re-start my answers…or to answer slightly different…

    Obviously so they could take 1 answer completely out of context…and use smiles and nods from different questions completely out of context…

    No shit. Anyone with cursory knowledge of the Daily Show could have predicted that one.

  4. 1000-1200 interviews a year? So like 3 a day?

  5. I call bullshit. Whiny dork does thousands of interviews but he’s too dumb to realize he’s being set up? Furthermore, he sits in a hot room for two hours? What? Why?

    You’re dumb, dude. Either that or a liar. Maybe both.

    1. Anyone familiar with this guy knows it’s both.

    2. Whiny? Fuck that. If I’m misrepresented, I want the opportunity to set the record straight. My only thing is why tell Reason? If this guy works for Fox News I’d try to get it on O’Reilly or something with a wider audience. I’m pretty sure he hates John Stewart.

      1. Bill-O would love to even the score with Stewart and Colbert some. They torch him on a regular basis.

        Bill-O’s “Tide goes in, tide goes out, but no one knows why” alone made him the butt of jokes for weeks.

  6. Why is he so pissed at Gillespie? All he did was post the link. He didn’t provide any commentary other than the title. And the title seemed to have a tinge of sarcasm at that. Only a crazed narcissist would agree to do one of those Daily Show interviews and think they could beat the editors.

    1. He must get the same secret Reason site where they publish all the articles about how great Obama is and how it’s OK for the IRS to engage in political sabotage that John and VG read.

    2. Yeah, reminds me of my friend who thought he could beat the con artists on NYC street corners. Remember those? He lost $80 and wanted to get it “back.” We tried in vain to tell him to move on but he was so convinced he ended up losing $160. We had to literally drag him away.

      Maybe someone should do the same for people who go on Colbert or Daily Show.

      They’re useless interviews anyway more to elicit laughs than anything. Those people want to get a message or story across but those are not the shows to do that.

      1. Bingo. Root always thinks he’s the smartest guy in the room, and the most loveable besides. He has an ego larger than any rock star or professional athlete, so I can see him going in there thinking, “The others the Daily Show set up, those guys are just SUCKERS. I’m Wayne Allyn Root! Watch to see how it’s done!”


    3. How about because the pull quote from Mediaite, which was completely optional, seems to make the claim that Root “vigorously support[s] the police profiling of Muslims, Latinos, and black people”

  7. 1000-1200 interviews a year? How many are not conducted by his cat?

  8. Fuck me. People actually believe Stewart and The Daily Show are legit news sources? It’s a classic tactic I learned in my brief encounters with media and television crews/shows. As my sister – a tv editor once told me – never, ever, never believe anything you see on TV. Ever.”

    Fall of the west for real.

    1. Some people also believe Fox News is a legit news source.

        1. Agree. All are news discussion networks. Similar to if newspapers were only editorials and ads.

    2. People actually believe Stewart and The Daily Show are legit news sources?

      Probably more than half of their viewers.

  9. WAR definitely should have known better. Those two shows have dullard audiences and need to give them what they want.

    1. Root knew the opportunity was a test. He went in knowing he might loose. He probably hoped to grab a chance to connect with millions of viewers. The only sure bet would be not to try. He tried. I can’t say I find anything wrong with that.

  10. ” It’s a classic Daily Show set-up, in which the interviewer ends up looking pretty bad…”


    1. Hopefully the editing gnomes will fix that.

  11. The Libertarian Party…They sure can pick ’em, huh?

    1. The LP is in dire need of a young champion but there are none on the horizon. Mark Cuban would be perfect but he is rich and too smart to get involved in elective politics.

      This champion cannot be tainted with the conservative label. Most people think of a Jerry Falwell type when they imagine a conservative.

      The job is open.

      1. They just let Adam Kokesh out of jail.

        1. Kokesh is an agorist, plus he’s not particularly charismatic in the political sense.

          1. If he can manage to motivate a couple hundred armed Americans to show up and smile at the DC police at the DC/Virginia border I don’t see why it matters if he is “not particularly charismatic in the political sense.”

            1. When we’re talking about the Libertarian Party, it does.

              I may substantially agree with Kokesh on most points, but he’s a loudmouth with no political polish. When he hosted Molyneux and Tucker on his show a few months back, his commentary was shrill and cringeworthy. Not a good political actor, not a great spokesperson for the movement, not a serious LP candidate.

              1. My bet is that Kokesh has had his fill of being a candidate for any political party.

      2. The LP is a basketcase. They would expel any potential “champion” who didn’t loudly proclaim the need to legalize heroin and prostitution from day 1.

        That job isn’t open so long as the party is run by doctrinaire oldsters with big fish in little pond issues.

        1. Bob Barr and GayJay weren’t all about hookers and smack.

          1. The problem with Gary is that his voice sounds awful.

  12. I give great interview

    Well, if I didn’t think he was a douche before, I do know.

  13. Come on, Nick, this transparent narcissist endorsed Romney. Can’t we give him the Bob Barr treatment and allow him to fade from memory as gracefully as WAR possibly can?

    1. If the LP can find worthy and notable candidates then Barr and Root will over time fade from memory. There isn’t any need to help the process along.

      If Bob Barr succeeds in returning to the US House in 2014 he may not fade at all.


      1. For libertarians he certainly will. That they even ran someone like Barr or Root speaks to how much the party is willing to compromise its values and wander from the path that does not stray.

  14. You know who else constantly got bad press…

  15. The only logical explanation is that Root is a time traveler from 1998 who doesn’t know the Daily Show’s MO.

    1. Well, you know, a number of people on the previous thread were taking it somewhat seriously enough to attack Root for his failings.. and not just for being dense enough to think he’d get a fair edit on the Daily Show.

  16. Wayne should have known that as soon as he heard that “Jason Jones” (not Stewart) would be doing the interview, that it would entail a setup to make someone appear to be a “fanatic” and look ridiculous.

    Wayne isn’t a fanatic, but Jones thought he had a single inconsistency that he could use to “nail” Root: was he in favor or opposed to “profiling”? Jones wasn’t interested in the subtle or gross variances in profiling methods, only that Root favored it for some, but not us. Jones was determined to do that, no matter how Root responded.

    Of course, Root can’t know the intentions and style of every person who conducts an interview, but he should at least know what happens on the Daily Show and who does the “funny” mockery dirty-work.

    1. Wayne isn’t a fanatic, but Jones thought he had a single inconsistency that he could use to “nail” Root:

      It’s not even that.

      The Daily Show’s writers already had the ‘interview’ scripted and just needed to keep WAR talking long enough to provide 30 seconds of dialog that was close enough to work with the script.

  17. How is it that other “conservative” know better than to appear on the Daily Show but Root with all his media experience hasn’t caught on?

    And why, when he was obviously being ambushed, did he tell those panelists that their experience was an inconvenience but not as bad as a targeted IRS audit?

    1. But WAR’s Israeli profiling quote is followed by this sentence: “No, not racial profiling, but rather “terrorist threat profiling.””

      Using this quote, and clips from a bunch of people who weren’t Root, was nasty and below the belt.

  18. This publicity-seeking loser got snookered? Who gives a fuk?

  19. This is all reminiscent of the Simpsons episode in which Homer is accused of sexual harassment, and has his interview deceptively edited on the TV show Rock Bottom: http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=d51_1343322862

  20. I tried to watch the Daily Show once but it reminded me of Letterman; really dumb jokes with a howling studio audience. It depressed me to think they could find a room full of people to laugh at that crap let alone pull ratings. It’s where the MTV crowd goes to get their news.

  21. WAR is a fraud himself. Anyone who would call himself a libertarian but turn around and support Romney is a fraud. Seems Wayne is just like Ryan, he has a major “principle” problem.

  22. Any conservative that goes on this show, Meet the Press or any of the multitude of Left Wing shows is an idiot. Do they really think they’re gonna get a fair deal? Really? Has that ever happened? Why would any conservative go on Letterman, or any MSNBC show? Only one reason.

    Sorry, Wayne, no sympathy here. Your ego got in the way of what you knew what was going to happen.

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