Radio shock jock Howard Stern thinks he helped Donald Trump become president by frequently interviewing him, though he admits to voting for Hillary Clinton in 2016.
In fact, Stern thinks Clinton made a mistake by never appearing on his show.
‘I wanted to see Hillary Clinton win,’ Stern told Good Morning America on Monday.
‘If she had come on the show – the way I helped Donald was I let him come on and be a personality,’ he said.
‘Whether you liked him or not … people related to him as a human being.
‘I wanted to do that for Hillary.
‘The big knock against Hillary, especially with some of the male audience, was, “Eh, we don’t like her.”’
The radio legend added: ‘Hillary Clinton’s afraid of me, and justifiably.’
‘I thought that perhaps if she came on my show, we could’ve stripped away some of the pomp and circumstance or the tightness that comes with running for president and, like Donald, she could’ve been seen in a different light.’
Stern credited Trump with being genuine and authentic when he came on the air.
‘Donald Trump, hands down, whenever you put him on the air, now, this is before he was running for president, he was an open book,’ Stern said.
‘He would say anything. And you know, oddly enough – during the campaign and even now, people quote these interviews that I did with him.’
Stern, who is promoting his latest book, Howard Stern Comes Again, criticized the media for digging up quotes from Trump’s interviews on the air during the presidential campaign.
In the weeks before the 2016 election, CNN’s KFile unearthed a clip from 1998 in which Trump compares the risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases in the 1980s to the Vietnam War.
In the clip, Stern asks Trump: ‘Let’s say you’re with a hot chick, right? But you’re so germ paranoid, and I’m germ paranoid, do you say to them, “look you’ve got to go take a medical test before I do you”?’
Trump responded: ‘Well, you’d like to say that, and sometimes you do.
‘The problem is that sometimes your own chemicals take over and you can’t wait.’
‘So you’ll just have straight intercourse with a rubber with them right?’ Stern asked.
‘Well, I don’t know, you know there’s lots of different ways of doing it,’ Trump said.
‘It’s a very complicated subject.
‘They say that more people were killed by women in this act than killed in Vietnam, OK.’
‘Yes, that is true,’ replied Stern, who added: ‘I even went as far to say that you’re braver than any Vietnam vet because you’re out there screwing a lot of women.’
‘Getting the Congressional Medal of Honor, in actuality,’ said Trump.
On Monday, Stern defended Trump over the comments.
‘It was in a very joking scenario,’ the ‘king of all media’ said.
‘He was not comparing his life to a Vietnam vet. It was ‘Ha-ha-ha and this and that.’
‘When journalists took it and made it serious, I thought it was a little bit unfair.’
Stern said that when Trump came on his show, ‘there was no filter’ and that he ‘was a big character on my show.’
When asked about the current state of his relationship with the president, Stern said there’s been a growing distance between the two men.
Stern believes the friendship cooled after the radio shock jock declined Trump’s offer to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland in the summer of 2016.
‘It’s a weird relationship I have,’ Stern said of Trump.
‘Donald was at my wedding… I remember having very warm feelings for Donald, and I do.
‘I mean, he was always very nice to me.’
When asked about Trump’s political persona, Stern said: ‘I didn’t know this was him.’
Stern’s much anticipated new book describes his recent health scare.
In May 2017, Stern startled his loyal fans when he failed to show up for work – a rarity for the shock jock who was famous for not missing a day.
On the morning of May 10, Stern was being wheeled into a hospital room where he was to have surgery to remove a growth on his kidney that doctors believed had a 90 per cent chance of being cancerous, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
‘And now all I’m thinking is, “I’m going to die”,’ he told THR.
‘And I’m scared s***less.’
But after the surgery, Stern was told by doctors that the growth was just a benign cyst.
The brush with death motivated Stern to re-examine his life. He began to go to therapy as much as four times a week.
‘I was so completely f***ed up back then,’ he told THR.
‘I didn’t know what was up and what was down, and there was no room for anybody else on the planet.’