Michael Keaton Struggles to Say ‘President-Elect’

Actor draws comparison between Trump, unscrupulous McDonald’s founder

Actor Michael Keaton on Tuesday compared President-Elect Donald Trump to McDonald’s founder Ray Kroc — and he didn’t mean it as a compliment.

Keaton made the comments on CNN’s “New Day,” where he was promoting his new film about Kroc. Host Alisyn Camerota noted that a number of news organization have noted parallels between Trump and Kroc. Variety called the movie, “The Founder,” an “unexpectedly piquant moral parable for the Trump era.” The Guardian declared it “the perfect start for Trump cinema.” And The New Yorker said, “‘The Founder’ emerges as the first Trumpist film of the new era.”

“I mean, I’ll just say it. Ray did some things toward the end that were unscrupulous, and so did you know the president-elect.”

Keaton said it could be argued that Kroc was the “original brander.” But he also pointed to part of Kroc’s career when his business practices were not particularly above board.

“I mean, I’ll just say it. Ray did some things toward the end that were unscrupulous, and so did, you know, the president-elect,” he said.

But Keaton said Kroc’s background is more of an up-by-your-bootstraps story.  He made a face as he struggled over Trump’s new title.

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“I’ll give you the big difference. The president-elect — wow, it’s that hard to say — was, uh, given — and there’s no doubt that he probably worked hard. I can’t judge that; I wasn’t there,” he said. “But he was given a lot, given a big jump, monetarily. Right? I mean he just was. And Ray Kroc was not. Ray Kroc had nothing.”

Camerota asked Keaton why he stumbled over the word president-elect.

“It’s a worrisome thing,” he said. “And we could do; if you want, we could — we’d be here a while. I don’t believe in real quick soundbites, because I think that’s unfair to everyone. But it’s really worrisome.”

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Keaton said BuzzFeed messed up “a little bit” by publishing an unverified dossier filled with embarrassing information that the Russian government supposedly has collected on Trump. He said BuzzFeed should admit error.

“But if they cower now and say, ‘Well, gee, we’re just going to disappear; we’re sorry; we’re really not legitimate,’ well, that would be a big mistake,” he said.

Keaton said the shame of BuzzFeed’s report is that it sets back CNN, The New York Times, and other legitimate news organizations.

“That’s a great target now for people who want to think this way anyway,” he said.

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