Is Linda McMahon Just Like Ronald Reagan — Or Fatty Arbuckle?

Glenn Thrush of is the latest to recycle the cliche that Linda McMahon’s background in World Wrestling Entertainment is analogous to Ronald Reagan’s in Hollywood. See “McMahon: WWE just like the Gipper’s ‘acting,'”

On this blog, I have argued that the analogy is flawed — that the McMahon family, unlike Reagan, are bosses, and that their own role is closer to that of Fatty Arbuckle (the silent-film star who was ruined by his involvement in the mysterious death of a starlet). See “Linda McMahon and the Fatty Arbuckle Defense,” March 21,

My Arbuckle post was in response to the Hartford Courant columnist I have cheekily dubbed Kevin “Don’t Call Linda McMahon My Mouthpiece” Rennie. But Politico’s Thrush is moving up fast on the outside for the title of McMahon’s No. 1 media lackey. Thrush wrote the piece earlier this month scooping Ted Mann of the New London Day on the story of how McMahon tipped a wrestling doctor that he was under federal investigation for illegally distributing steroids. As I have written previously, I strongly suspect that Politico’s report was a “Friday news dump” planted by the McMahon campaign to soften the impact of Mann’s.

I’ll email these posts to Thrush, and if he has anything to share about my sour assessment of his coverage, I’ll let everyone know.

Irv Muchnick

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