Former President Donald Trump blasted Republican primary rival Asa Hutchinson as “weak and pathetic” in an interview with Tucker Carlson that aired Wednesday night while the former Arkansas governor participated in Fox News’ Wisconsin debate.
Trump also called Hutchinson “nasty,” adding that he “always has been.”
The remarks came in response to a question from Carlson asking the former president to clarify who he thought shouldn’t be running for the Oval Office.
“When you say there are people on stage who shouldn’t be running for president, who do you mean?” Carlson asked.
“Well, I don’t want to really use names but it wouldn’t matter too much,” Trump said. “A guy like ‘Ada’ Hutchinson. It’s ‘Asa’ but I call him ‘Ada.'”
“Why do you call him ‘Ada?'” Carlson said.
“I could tell you, but I don’t want to get myself into a little trouble,” Trump said.
Hutchinson spent the evening on stage in Milwaukee participating in the Republican debate moderated by Carlson’s former network. Trump opted out of the debate after refusing to sign on to the required RNC pledge to support the eventual Republican nominee. The former president is leading the field by more than 40 points, while Hutchinson is polling at less than 1 percent, according to RealClearPolitics’ latest aggregate of surveys.
“How does this guy get elected governor of Arkansas?” Trump asked.
At an Iowa forum in July, Carlson pressed Hutchinson on his 2021 veto of a bill that would have banned transgender surgeries, wrong-sex hormones, and puberty blockers for minors.
“What I believe in is that parents ought to raise their children. I believe that parents ought to be in control. And I also believe in the Constitution,” Hutchinson said. “I believe that God created two genders, and that there should not be any confusion on your gender. But if there is confusion, then parents ought to be the one that guides the children. That to me is an important fundamental principle.”
Carlson noted the former governor “drew the line at castration or physical altercation of the child’s body because it’s permanent” before reminding him of the lifelong impacts of hormone injections and other drastic interventions.
“It changes the bone structure. It changes the brain of the child. A lot of people believe, including me, that it destroys the child’s life. But it is permanent. It’s not reversible,” Carlson said.
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