Millions tuned in Tuesday night to watch President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden’s first presidential debate, moderated by Chris Wallace.
During the last election, Megyn Kelly moderated the first Republican presidential debate in 2015 alongside Wallace for Fox News. Trump famously insulted her over her performance, telling CNN afterward, "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever. In my opinion, she was off base."
“Extra’s” Billy Bush caught up with Megyn, who now has her own podcast, “The Megyn Kelly Show,” to get her take on the debate.
Billy asked, “How would you describe last night's debate?" before joking, "We do have the ability to bleep any word you choose." Megyn replied, “Well, I tweeted out that it was a s*** show and I stand behind that… It was a hot mess that didn't allow us to hear much substance at all, and I think the only people who really enjoyed it were people who, like yours truly, are a little pugilistic by nature and were watching the fighter keep throwing the blows and the other guy try to get to the corner of the ring and how… stylistically they were doing. But nobody learned anything.”
Billy asked if Trump, who is behind in all national polls, moved the needle at all, and Megyn pointed out the moment where Trump told the Proud Boys, a reportedly far-right, male-only fraternity, to “stand back and stand by.”
Trump later walked back the comment, telling White House reporters today, "Whoever they are, they have to stand down -- let law enforcement do their work." When asked again if he denounces white supremacy, he answered, "I've always denounced any form, any form, any form of any of that, you have to denounce."
Kelly said of the debate, “His refusal to just come right out and say, 'I condemn Proud Boys…' That’s not a good moment for him… He did say he condemned white supremacy, he said, 'Sure.' He could have been a lot stronger in that.”
Bush shared, “White suburban women… I’m imagining that group cringing on their couch going, ‘I think I’m going to leave the living room. This is not comfortable.’” Megyn said, “I'll say in Trump's defense, ‘Didn't we already know that about him?’”
Megyn went on, “I wasn't shocked by Trump's behavior… Clearly, he just wanted to go in there and dump against Biden, and he succeeded in not letting Biden get one clean soundbite out… Had I been in Biden’s shoes, I would have looked over at Trump every time he interrupted me and said, like... ‘You seem upset… do you need a break?’”
Kelly, who worked with Wallace at Fox News, weighed in on how he handled moderating, noting that he was in "an impossible situation… We've never had a presidential debate like that, and so I admit that he was on unchartered territory.”
What would she have done? “Had it been me out there, I would have said, ‘I want control of the cameras and I want control of the mics… and keep me in control of the mics.’ Let me tell you something, if I looked at Donald Trump and said, ‘Mr. Trump, I appreciate that you want to be heard and I’ve turned off your mic and the camera is on me, so no one can see you or hear you when you're interrupting,’ that would have stopped it… and that would have stopped Biden, who was also interrupting.”
Coming to Wallace’s defense, she added, “It's not Wallace’s fault. Joe Biden should have taken control and put Trump in his place. He wants to be the president of the United States.”
She went on, “It's sad. I realize it's sad for our country… but so be it, because the country itself is really divided right now and I think both sides want a fight.”