In a new interview with Buzzfeed, Glenn reflects on the evolution of his role from pundit to preacher and gives a sneak peek at the "Restoring Love" rally planned for this summer in Dallas.
Glenn Beck, Buzzfeed's McCay Coppins writes, is the "conservative Dick Clark."
IRVING, Texas — The spring of 2010 was a dark time for Glenn Beck. He was leaving Fox News amid escalating controversy around his show, a provocative broadcast that proved too hot even for the conservative network. His liberal critics were smugly celebrating his apparent fall, and his future was far from certain. But his pessimism, he said in an interview, went beyond the cracks at the foundation of his own media empire: He was beginning to doubt whether the right-wing political movement he had marshaled from his perch at Fox was actually strong enough to snatch the nation's soul from the jaws of tyranny.
"All I was seeing was how vast the resources of the Left were and how well-orchestrated," Beck told BuzzFeed. "And every time I would war-game it, I would be like: lose, lose, lose, lose, lose." The gloomy outlook followed him even to Washington D.C. in August of 2010, where he drew crowds in the hundreds of thousands for a widely-publicized rally. On stage, he preached about the need for a "restoration of honor." But inside, he was filled with uncertainty: "That's where I was when I was on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial mentally. That's not what I was saying, but mentally, that's where I was at."
Two years later, Beck is richer, if less relevant. He has launched an ambitious and lucrative online television network, and Monday announced a new $100 million radio contract. He’s hosted high-profile rallies on two continents. And Beck believes, most important, that he’s arrived at a solution for both America's teetering democracy, and his once-toxic brand.
"The conservative movement needs a Dick Clark," Beck told BuzzFeed in a recent interview. "And I hope to fill some of that vacuum."