Magazine | March 11, 2019, Issue

“The Kellyanne Conway Show”

(Lucy Nicholson/Reuters)

Episode 233: Ghost of a Chance

Fade In:

int. office — day

Kellyanne is at her desk. The office is empty.

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): Kellyanne?

Kellyanne looks around. There’s no one there.

Kellyanne: Hello?

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): Kellyanne, it’s Mick Mulvaney. I am the chief of

staff in the —

Kellyanne: I know what you are, Mr. Mulvaney. But where are you?

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): Exactly, Kellyanne. Where am I? I am nowhere. And everywhere. I cannot be seen or detected. I float invisibly through walls. I know it might seem silly to you, Kellyanne. But the trick to surviving in my position is, remain invisible to the naked eye.

Kellyanne: I get it, Mr. Mulvaney, I really do. But don’t you think you’d be more effective at this job — more effective with you know who — if you weren’t hiding behind the Andrew Jackson credenza?

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): That’s not where I am, Kellyanne.

Kellyanne: That’s exactly where you are, Mr. Mulvaney. I can see your shoes.

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): You play it your way, I’ll play it my way. Now look, Kellyanne, we’ve convinced the president to sign the budget deal with the Democrats despite getting basically zero in return. No actual money for the wall, so the only way it’ll happen is by a presidential declaration of a national emergency. Now what we need you to do is —

President Trump enters.

President Trump: Hey, hey!

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): Gotta go! There is a whoosh of air and the sound of footsteps.

President Trump: How’re we doing, Kellyanne?

Kellyanne: We’re doing okay, Mr. President.

President Trump: You sound down, Kellyanne. You sound like someone who thought he smelled a Cinnabon but then realized it was just an Auntie Anne’s.

Kellyanne: Well put, sir. I guess I am a little depressed. Our poll numbers are dropping. We had such a great bounce after the State of the Union —

President Trump: I totally crushed that, didn’t I?

Kellyanne: You sure did, sir. But now with the budget deal and the national-emergency decree, we’re looking at some pretty low numbers.

President Trump: You know who I blame, Kellyanne?

Kellyanne: Paul Ryan?

President Trump: No.

Kellyanne: Mitch McConnell? John Kelly? The media? Jeb? Hillary? Am I getting warmer?

President Trump: I blame Ann Coulter.

Kellyanne: Actually, I should have guessed that one first.

President Trump: It’s so easy to sit on the sidelines and criticize, Kellyanne. It all looks so simple from the armchair. But when you’re the matador in the ring, making the tough calls, facing the loneliness of leadership — speaking of, when’s the flight to Palm Beach?

Kellyanne: This afternoon, sir.

President Trump: Well, what am I supposed to do until then?

Kellyanne: Sir, have you tried calling Ann? Maybe if the two of you talked, you could get some of the magic back.

President Trump: I don’t know . . .

Kellyanne: Sir, it’s worth a try. I mean, she wrote a whole book about how great you are.

President Trump: She’s been very mean to me. I know I need to build the wall. And I’m going to, somehow. But how about her wall, huh? What about her wall?

Kellyanne: Sir?

President Trump: The wall she’s built around her heart. The wall that keeps me out.

Beat.

President Trump: Too far?

Kellyanne: I think so, sir.

President Trump: Then I probably shouldn’t have texted that to her five minutes ago, right?

Kellyanne: (to camera) Grrrrrrrrrrr.

President Trump: I don’t know why I care so much. Hannity still loves me. Rush, Laura, Jeanine, Doocy and the friends. So what’s with Ann, Kellyanne?

Kellyanne: Well, sir, she was your first, and that’s a hard thing to get over. Maybe if you —

President Trump: Wait a minute! I’m getting an idea!

Kellyanne: (to camera) Grrrrrrrrrrr.

President Trump: Kellyanne! Ann! KellyANNE! Ann! You guys have basically the same name, you look alike —

Kellyanne: We do not look alike.

President Trump: Kellyanne, can I be honest? When I hired you for this job I really and truly thought I was hiring her.

Kellyanne: Well, that’s just —

President Trump: Don’t interrupt! I’m on a roll! We dress you up like Ann, maybe get some hair extensions — you can borrow mine, actually, Ann and I share a colorist — we go for a quote unquote sunset walk in Palm Beach, from the back we tell everyone it’s Ann, and it looks like we’ve made up, problem solved.

Kellyanne: But —

President Trump: Her fans will buy it! They’ll buy anything!

Kellyanne: Actually, you guys have pretty much the same —

President Trump: It’s a great idea! I cannot believe how smart I am!

Mick Mulvaney (V.O.): It’s genius, sir!

Off Kellyanne’s expression, we:

Fade Out.

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