On Monday night, former Fox News host Kimberly Guilfoyle, a top fundraiser for the Trump reelection effort and girlfriend of Donald Trump Jr., delivered a booming, scenery-chewing speech at the 2020 Republican National Convention that immediately went viral.
It concluded, her arms outstretched, with Guilfoyle’s bellowed vow, “The. Best. Is. Yet. To. Come!”
CNN personalities were flabbergasted by it, with correspondent Dana Bash remarking, “Oh, my goodness. I just feel like that was so intense, and so dark.” Late Show host Stephen Colbert mocked the pretaped address as a series of “very nuanced screams.”
Her critics found the speech to be over-the-top and “strange.” The leader of the free world vehemently disagreed.
Minutes after her speech aired on Monday evening, President Donald Trump called Guilfoyle, to effusively praise her for the address he’d just watch on TV, comparing her to Eva “Evita” Perón, according to two people familiar with the phone conversation.
Perón, a former first lady of Argentina, is also the subject of the famous Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Evita, of which Trump has long been a huge fan and has seen multiple times on stage.
“That was fantastic…so amazing,” Trump said on the Monday night call. “So much energy…so much passion.” According to these sources, the president added that “nobody could have done that but you,” calling her “my Kimberly.” He told her that hers was one of the “greatest” speeches he’d ever seen.
Guilfoyle’s Monday night speech stuck with the president throughout the week. He continued to privately rave about it days after its initial airing, going around telling various people in the West Wing how “terrific” it was and that it was one of his favorites from the convention.
“You are capable! You are qualified! You are powerful and you have the ability to choose your life and determine your destiny!” Guilfoyle delivered thunderously on Monday. “Don’t let the Democrats take you for granted. Don’t let them step on you. Don’t let them destroy your families, your lives, and your future. Don’t let them kill future generations because they told you and brainwashed you and fed you lies that you weren’t good enough!”
One senior Trump administration official said that the president joked last week that it was “better than Don’s,” referring to the convention speech delivered by his eldest son.
The GOP convention continued for another three nights, as Trump and his administration continued to struggle with the coronavirus pandemic, a wrecked U.S. economy, and ongoing violence and racial and civil unrest stemming from police killings and shootings, with a presidential election just over two months away.