Michael Moore explains why Trump won in 45-minute commercial-free 'Morning Joe' appearance

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In the wake of what turned out to be an accurate prediction that Donald Trump would win the 2016 presidential election, in part because of support in rust-belt states, Michael Moore has been talking further about what led him to realize, over the summer, that Trump was connecting with people in a way that would lead to victory.

On Friday, the filmmaker stopped by MSNBC's Morning Joe for what he said was planned to be a seven-minute appearance but turned into a 45-minute discussion, as part of a panel, that aired on the cable channel without commercials.

During the wide-ranging discussion, Moore talked about why Trump connected with working people in states like Wisconsin and Michigan, why he and others will continue to oppose the president-elect and wondered aloud, as he has in the past, why the Democratic party doesn't "run more beloved Americans," like Tom Hanks and Oprah Winfrey.

As for Trump's appeal, Moore, who supported Bernie Sanders and went on to support Hillary Clinton in the general election, said that he's in Trump's "demographic."

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Today I went & stood in front of Trump Tower & held a sign until the police came. Then I went home & wrote Donald a letter. Here it is:

Dear Donald Trump:

You may remember (you do, after all, have a "perfect memory!"), that we met back in November of 1998 in the green room of a talk show where we were both scheduled to appear one afternoon. But just before going on, I was pulled aside by a producer from the show who said that you were "nervous" about being on the set with me. She said you didn't want to be "ripped apart" and you wanted to be reassured I wouldn't "go after you."

"Does he think I'm going to tackle him and put him in a choke hold?" I asked, bewildered.

"No," the producer replied, "he just seems all jittery about you."

"Huh. I've never met the guy. There's no reason for him to be scared," I said. "I really don't know much about him other than he seems to like his name on stuff. I'll talk to him if you want me to."

And so, as you may remember, I did. I went up and introduced myself to you. "The producer says you're worried I might say or do something to you during the show. Hey, no offense, but I barely know who you are. I'm from Michigan. Please don't worry -- we're gonna get along just fine!"

You seemed relieved, then leaned in and said to me, "I just didn't want any trouble out there and I just wanted to make sure that, you know, you and I got along. That you weren't going to pick on me for something ridiculous."

"Pick on" you? I thought, where are we, in 3rd grade? I was struck by how you, a self-described tough guy from Queens, seemed like such a fraidey-cat.

You and I went on to do the show. Nothing untoward happened between us. I didn't pull on your hair, didn't put gum on your seat. "What a wuss," was all I remember thinking as I left the set.

And now, here we are in 2015 and, like many other angry white guys, you are frightened by a bogeyman who is out to get you. That bogeyman, in your mind, are all Muslims. Not just the ones who have killed, but ALL MUSLIMS.

Fortunately, Donald, you and your supporters no longer look like what America actually is today. We are not a country of angry white guys. Here's a statistic that is going to make your hair spin: Eighty-one percent of the electorate who will pick the president next year are either female, people of color, or young people between the ages of 18 and 35. In other words, not you. And not the people who want you leading their country.

So, in desperation and insanity, you call for a ban on all Muslims entering this country. I was raised to believe that we are all each other's brother and sister, regardless of race, creed or color. That means if you want to ban Muslims, you are first going to have to ban me. And everyone else.

We are all Muslim.

Just as we are all Mexican, we are all Catholic and Jewish and white and black and every shade in between. We are all children of God (or nature or whatever you believe in), part of the human family, and nothing you say or do can change that fact one iota. If you don't like living by these American rules, then you need to go to the time-out room in any one of your Towers, sit there, and think about what you've said.

And then leave the rest of us alone so we can elect a real president who is both compassionate and strong -- at least strong enough not to be all whiny and scared of some guy in a ballcap from Michigan sitting next to him on a talk show couch. You're not so tough, Donny, and I'm glad I got to see the real you up close and personal all those years ago.

We are all Muslim. Deal with it.

All my best,
Michael Moore

P.S. I'm asking everyone who reads this letter to go here (http://michaelmoore.com/weareallmuslim), and sign the following statement: "WE ARE ALL MUSLIM" -- and then post a photo of yourself holding a homemade sign saying "WE ARE ALL MUSLIM" on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram using the hashtag ‪#‎WeAreAllMuslim‬. I will post all the photos on my site and send them to you, Mr. Trump. Feel free to join us.

P.P.S. - To sign my statement for #WeAreAllMuslim, go here on my website: http://michaelmoore.com/weareallmuslim

(Photo via Facebook)

Filmmaker Michael Moore, right, chats with tycoon Malcolm Forbes before a screening of âRoger and Meâ at New Yorkâs Lincoln Center, Monday, Dec. 18, 1989. Mooreâs comedy chronicles the tough times of his hometown of Flint, Mich., and his unsuccessful efforts to meet with General Motors Chairman Roger Smith. (AP Photo/Ed Bailey)
Television personality and filmmaker Michael Moore holds a ficus tree during a tongue-in-cheek news conference in Morristown, N.J., in this April 26, 2000 photo. Moore announced the write-in candidacy of the ficus tree for the 11th District seat in Congress, currently held by Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J. Moore says the ficus will run as both a Democrat and a Republican because, "There is little difference between the two so-called parties." (AP Photo/Mike Derer, File)
** FILE** Director Michael Moore poses for a portrait Oct. 9, 2002, in Los Angeles. Academy Award-winning filmmaker Moore is under investigation by the U.S. Treasury Department for taking ailing Sept. 11 rescue workers to Cuba for a segment in his upcoming health-care documentary "Sicko," The Associated Press has learned. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
Filmmaker and author Michael Moore speaks during a 'Book and Author Breakfast' at the Book Expo L.A. Sunday, June 1, 2003 in Los Angeles. Moore, author of 'Stupid White Men,' has a new book soon to be released. (AP Photo/Lee Celano)
Filmmaker Michael Moore gestures as Senator John McCain of Arizona speaks at Madison Square Garden during the Republican National Convention in New York, Monday, Aug. 30, 2004. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Filmmaker Michael Moore speaks to reporters prior to his speech to students at the University of Nevada, Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2004, in Reno, Nev. (AP Photo/Debra Reid)
Oscar award winning filmmaker Michael Moore, left, comments on the censure to his documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11," during an appearance at "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno," Friday, Oct. 15, 2004, at the NBC studios in Burbank, Calif. A pay-per-view cable channel is scrapping plans to air "The Michael Moore Pre-Election Special." Citing what it calls "legitimate business and legal concerns," IN DEMAND won't be showing an election eve special that would have included the first TV showing of Moore's documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11." Moore has just released his movie on DVD and was seeking a TV outlet for the film as close to the election as possible. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore discussed ``Film and Foreign Policy'' at the Los Angeles World Affairs Council Monday, Dec. 6, 2004, in Beverly Hills, Calif. Moore, most recently known for "Fahrenheit 9/11, " a film that shattered box office records and blasted President Bush, his administration and the Iraq war, spoke on the long-term effects controversial films have on American consciousness and the way we shape and implement our foreign policy. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)
Director Michael Moore arrives for a gala during Toronto International Film Festival in Torornto, Friday, Sep. 8, 2006. First, General Motors. Then gun control, followed by George W. Bush. Now rabble-rousing filmmaker Michael Moore has turned his irreverent camera on health care in America. "Sicko," Moore's dissection of the health care system, promises to be another hilarious documentary romp, based on excerpts he showed Friday night at the Toronto International Film Festival. (AP Photo/Chitose Suzuki)
Filmmaker Michael Moore holds a town hall-style meeting at the Palace Theater in Manchester, N.H., after a screening of his latest film, "Sicko", Friday, June 22, 2007. (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter)
Filmmaker Michael Moore speaks to the media prior to a Writers Guild of America East membership meeting to discuss the latest contract proposal Saturday, Feb. 9, 2008 in new York. (AP Photo/Gary He)
Filmmaker Michael Moore arrives at the premiere of "Semi-Pro" in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2008. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles)
US filmmaker Michael Moore attends a meeting at the 66th edition of the Venice Film Festival in Venice, Italy, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2009. Moore will compete with his latest movie ' Capitalism: A Love Story ' . (AP Photo/Domenico Stinellis)
Filmmaker Michael Moore gestures during a visit to the "Occupy Wall Street" protest in Zuccotti Park in New York, Monday, Sept. 26, 2011. The protesters, many of whom are camping out in the lower Manhattan plaza to speak out against corporate greed and social inequality, got a morale boost from Moore, who told the crowd they were the start of something big. (AP Photo/Stephanie Keith)
Filmmaker Michael Moore addresses several hundred Occupy Oakland protesters outside City Hall in Oakland, Calif., on Friday, Oct. 28, 2011. Moore urged the protesters to continue demonstrating against what they see as a growing disparity between rich and poor. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
FILE- In this Feb. 26, 2012, file photo, filmmaker Michael Moore arrives before the 84th Academy Awards in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. Moore has filed for divorce after 21 years of marriage to Kathleen Glynn, his collaborator on the Oscar-winning "Bowling for Columbine" and other projects. A final hearing is scheduled for Sept. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Joel Ryan, File)
Sony Pictures Classics co-president Tom Bernard, left, director Malik Bendjelloul, musician Sixto Rodriguez and filmmaker Michael Moore pose together at the National Board of Review Awards gala at Cipriani 42nd St. on Tuesday Jan. 8, 2013 in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
Filmmaker Michael Moore attends the premiere of "The Hateful Eight" at the Ziegfeld Theatre on Monday, Dec. 14, 2015, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
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"I am an angry white guy over the age of 35. And I have just a high-school education, so I grew up with it, I lived with it, I still live with it," he said. He explained that he realized that the media didn't seem to get Trump's appeal when he saw on Morning Joe, a few weeks before the election, people laughing about how the Trump campaign expense report showed they'd spent more money on hats than they had on anything else, like polling or efforts to get out the vote.

Read more: Michael Moore's Once-Shocking Prediction of a Trump Presidency Now Feels Very Prescient

"I looked at that and I thought, 'Wow, there's the bubble right there. They don't understand,'" he said putting on his own cap. "This is where we're from. This is where I live. And so to make fun of — [people in the Midwest wear baseball hats]."

Moore and Morning Joe hosts Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough agreed that someone who buys and wears, every day, a baseball cap in support of a candidate, will vote for that candidate.

"It was laughable that [Trump's campaign] wasn't spending the money on getting new polls. [Critics said,] 'They have no ground game.' Are you kidding me? First of all, the ground game has occurred over the last 30 years," Moore continued. "And this did not turn people into Republicans. Because it started under Ronald Reagan, in Detroit, where people lost tens of thousands of jobs and their lives were decimated and they were kicked out of the middle class. And when Reagan fired the air traffic controllers and the other unions didn't stand up and say anything or do anything, that was the end, right there. And it just got worse and worse and worse for working people."

He also argued that when Trump made his comment during the first debate that not paying taxes "makes me smart," his supporters liked that even though the media thought it was outrageous.

"Do you understand that people who struggle from paycheck to paycheck — they admire — On April 10, they sit there not trying to pay the government anything," Moore said.

Read more: Michael Moore Talks Surprise 'TrumpLand' Film: "Look for the Good in Hillary Clinton"

Moore indicated that the Democrats should have seen Bernie Sanders' success, particularly in states like Michigan and Wisconsin, which Trump also did well in, as a warning sign.

They both reflected people's desire for change, he explained, adding "How else do you explain a socialist [winning 22 states]? This is not a socialist country. People didn't care about the label."

And he went on to say that people who voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012 changed their mind in 2016, not wanting another eight years with "no middle-class jobs, where they're struggling to get by." He also said that even though Obama showed up in Flint, Michigan five months ago and drank the water, the pipes have still not been replaced and the water's "still poisoned." But the media stopped ignoring those problems after the president's visit, Moore said.

And Moore himself saw that Clinton wasn't going to win hours before the election results came in.

"I was there. I was there up until 2 a.m. on Election Day, holding rallies, trying to turn it around on my own," he said. "I'm not part of the campaign, I was just doing my own thing. And I could see that this wasn't going to happen and that what I'd said back in the summer was sadly going to be true."

Read more: Michael Moore Weighs In on Trump's Election Victory: "I Don't Think He Wanted the Job"

Now, going forward, he understands and approves of Obama and Clinton saying people should have an open mind, but he's not going to do that.

"We are going to resist. We are going to oppose," he said. "Those demonstrations you're seeing on the streets. When it's in places like Milwaukee — that's not Berkeley and Ann Arbor. This is going to continue tonight and the next night. All he has to do is start nominating Rudy Giuliani as attorney general and things like that. Or [make] his Supreme Court [picks]. This is going to be a massive resistance. There's already — women are calling for a million woman march on the Inauguration Day. There's going to be the largest demonstration ever on Inauguration Day. We're also going to organize."

Moore also suggested that Trump could wind up getting impeached before his first term is up, saying, "He doesn't support any ideology except the ideology of Donald J. Trump. And when you have a narcissist like that who's so narcissistic where it's all about him, he will break laws. He will break laws, because he's only thinking about what's best for him."

The filmmaker also suggested that Democrats do as the Republicans have done and run Hollywood stars, something he also suggested in 2010.

"Why don't Democrats run more beloved Americans? Why don't we run Tom Hanks? Why don't we run Oprah? Tell me Oprah would lose," he said.

Watch Moore's full appearance below.


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