There was host-on-host violence at NBC on Sunday.
Donald Trump, who hosts the network’s reality show “The Apprentice,” blew up on Twitter after a remark “Meet The Press” moderator Chuck Todd made a crack on air Sunday morning.
Todd was discussing Trump’s Saturday speech at the Iowa Freedom Summit when he threw in a jab about the real estate mogul and reality star’s history of flirting with White House bids.
“Nobody’s going to mistake Donald Trump for a presidential candidate, I don’t think, other than Donald Trump,” Todd said.
Trump, who has said he’s “very seriously” considering running for president in 2016, previously toyed with launching a campaign in 2012 and 2000. He clearly didn’t take kindly to Todd’s comment. Shortly after the broadcast, Trump unleashed a series of tweets mocking Todd’s ratings.
Todd took over “Meet The Press” last September after the departure of the show’s previous host, David Gregory. Since then, Todd initially struggled to match Gregory’s ratings. Recently, Todd’s numbers have improved. On Jan. 18, he had his highest-rated broadcast of the show drawing an audience that had not been seen since Gregory left.
Trump wasn’t the only one who took shots at “Meet The Press” after Todd’s comment. Sam Nunberg, an adviser who’s working with Trump on his political efforts, also fired off a series of tweets on Sunday making fun of Todd’s ratings. In those messages Nunberg suggested Trump’s work on “The Apprentice” is what allows NBC to keep airing Todd.
After an almost two-year hiatus, “The Apprentice” recently returned to what “Entertainment Weekly” described as “surprisingly strong” ratings.
Business Insider reached out to Nunberg late Sunday afternoon to see if Trump had further comment on his feud with Todd.
Nunberg said he was at the airport leaving Des Moines where he had been with Trump at the Iowa Freedom Summit. He claimed Trump would be unable to comment because of the Miss Universe Pageant. The annual event, which is co-hosted by Trump and NBC, is airing live on the network Sunday evening.
“Unfortunately, Mr. Trump is unavailable as he is at the Trump Doral for Miss Universe, which will make NBC profits and recoup the money they lost on Chuck this morning,” Nunberg said.
Nunberg went on to double down on Trump’s claim Todd could be fired soon.
“Chuck has made a prediction that Mr. Trump will not run for president,” said Nunberg. “That is his prerogative. I have a very easy prediction. Chuck will be fired within a year and I wish Vegas would let me put money on it.”
Nunberg also suggested Todd is merely a placeholder before NBC News congressional correspondent Luke Russert takes over hosting duties on “Meet The Press.” Russert’s father, Tim Russert, moderated the show from 1991 through 2008.
“‘Meet The Press’ is a critical and valuable show. Everyone knows Chuck is supposed to keep the seat warm for Luke,” Nunberg said. “I just hope that Chuck doesn’t destroy ‘Meet The Press’ so Luke has nothing to work with.”
A spokesperson for NBC News declined to comment on this story.
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