You are using an outdated browser.
Please upgrade your browser
and improve your visit to our site.
Skip Navigation

Primary Concerns Episode 8: R@tfucking, How Does It Work?

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

This week might have been a slow one for the primary cycle—no elections, no debates—but nature abhors a vacuum, and so does Donald Trump. 

First, Trump’s campaign manager was charged with simple battery for allegedly assaulting Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields in early March. Then, the campaign was accused of planting a story in the National Enquirer that claimed Ted Cruz has had extramarital affairs. Host Brian Beutler discusses all of this and more with guest Sam Stein, senior politics editor for the Huffington Post and host of the Candidate Confessional podcast.

Then, UC Davis history professor Eric Rauchway joins the show to explain the storied origins of “ratfucking,” the term Cruz alluded to in his remarks about Trump operative Roger Stone planting the sex scandal story. Take a listen.

Further reading:

  • Sam Stein’s podcast, Candidate Confessional: stories of those who ran for office and lost, from the Huffington Post
  • The Money Makers, a book by Eric Rauchway on how Roosevelt and Keynes ended the Depression, defeated fascism, and secured peace 
  • Brian Beutler on Trump as the great disrupter, for the New Republic