12:01pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Tom Arnold Rips "Racist" Trump, Mark Burnett; Demands Release of 'Apprentice' Tapes
Tom Arnold on Thursday morning unleashed a sublime polemic against Donald Trump, kicking off a promotional appearance for his new series, Viceland's The Hunt for the Trump Tapes, by saying that he won't stop digging until the president quits — and that he "doesn't give a shit" about the 40 percent of Americans still standing by him.
"I'm going to do this until he resigns," said Arnold. "He is a crazy person. He is putting this country on the precipice of war right now. For some reason, I am in a position to do something, and it is working. And I am going to do this until that guy resigns and the world will be safer. It's going to happen."
Arnold, a former Trump friend turned outspoken critic, was open about his lack of qualifications for investigative reporting. Instead, he focused on the producers and researchers doing the real work to uncover incriminating audio and video of Trump — namely from his time on The Apprentice and even the alleged "pee-pee tape."
"You will know there is a pee-pee tape," said Arnold. "There will be no doubt in your mind."
The actor-comedian offered little more than silence when asked what ex-wife Roseanne Barr might think of his new show, but he had a lot of choice words for Apprentice creator Mark Burnett.
"I would love Mark Burnett, who sits at the prayer breakfast with [Trump], I'd like him to stand up and say, 'We had to cut out all the lies, sexual harassment and incompetence,'" said Arnold, who noted that he pushes at Burnett throughout his upcoming series. "He sits next to Donald Trump, and gives him cover. He never says one word. Mark Burnett says he's a Christian, and he lets that man do all that bullshit and he let a sexual harasser work on his show."
Accusations from Arnold came at such a fevered pace it was difficult to keep track. He said he has proof that Trump said the "N-word" multiple times. He also said that he has evidence that Trump borrowed money from convicted sex offender and financier Jeffrey Epstein in 2008 because he was "broke." Arnold also took aim at WME topper Ari Emanuel: "It's on these people who are protecting him, including Ari Emanuel, who owns Miss Universe."
But, again, it was Burnett who got most of Arnold's ire. The comedian said he and wife Roma Downey are protected by the fact that they made the miniseries The Bible, something that has engendered them trust and support with the evangelical right and Trump's supporters.
"He could go on one of those Jesus channels and say, 'People, calm down, Donald Trump is not from Jesus,'" said Arnold.
Reminding the audience of TV critics throughout the panel that the show was also a comedy, Arnold indeed incited laughs while insisting Trump is not the germaphobe people think he is — "How many germaphobes 'raw dog' that many porn stars?" — and with his dismissal of those who will support the president no matter what: "This 40 percent? Fuck 'em."
But that 40 percent can rest assured, for now, that nothing earth-shattering seems to have been uncovered by Arnold's yet-to-be-released series, as executive producer Nomi Ernst Leidner was quick to clarify.
"If we had a tape that would completely change this regime," she said, "of course we'd make sure American public got it right away."
The Hunt for the Trump Tapes is set to premiere Sept. 18.