In what can only be described as a strange exchange between Sean Hannity and prominent “Never Trump” conservatives, the talk show host has indicated that he is prepared to “punch back.” He said on his radio show Tuesday:
They’ve all taken shots at me first. I’m a counter-puncher. I punch back. Now working toward my black belt … finally got my brown belt. If you hit me, come at me, I’m really going to hurt you.
The comments follow several weeks of defense by Hannity of Trump from conservative leaders. The “they” to which he is referencing are namely those like radio host Glenn Beck, National Review Editor Rich Lowry, and columnist Jonah Goldberg. He quickly noted that he was not threatening actual physical harm.
Noteworthy is that Hannity has radically shifted his tone in recent years. He has seemingly taken on every possible label within the Republican Party. Now, however, he appears to serve no other purpose to prop up the candidacy of Trump. Any small-government principles which he once held have apparently been discarded in favor of the 2016 Republican nominee. Though he is only a pundit and not an actual politician, this is of note because so many conservatives look to leaders like Hannity for guidance in their ideology.
Watch an interview between Hannity and Trump from last month: