Trump-boosting pillow magnate Mike Lindell erupted on Tuesday over the mere mention of a lunch break during the opening hours of his three-day “cyber symposium” on supposed election fraud, yelling that there are “no breaks” and vowing to stay up on stage for “72 hours.” Moments later, however, the MyPillow CEO shuffled off, ceding the stage to one of his purported cyber experts.
It was merely one of several head-scratching and cringeworthy moments that occurred during the early portion of the MAGA fantasy camp.
Lindell has relentlessly pushed baseless claims that voting machines stole the election from former President Donald Trump, and he has spent the past few weeks promoting the symposium as a world-changing event that would finally reveal irrefutable proof of a rigged 2020 presidential vote. (Lindell, of course, has made similar claims about his election fraud “documentaries” that never provided any actual evidence of corrupt voting machines or widespread voter fraud.)
The pillow mogul’s campaign to gain attention for his South Dakota-based event included a disastrous CNN interview, in which reporter Drew Griffin debunked Lindell’s claims and called his evidence “proof of nothing.” At one point, the reporter told Lindell he may be the “victim of a scam.” Furthermore, an enraged Lindell pulled all of his ads from Fox News—where he spent $50 million on commercials last year—because the right-leaning network wouldn’t run a promo for his symposium.
Ready to show the world that Trump should still be president (he has previously said the Supreme Court would vote 9-0 to reinstate Trump after viewing his “data packages”), Lindell’s event got off to an inevitably rocky start on Tuesday morning: Despite a billed kickoff at 9 a.m. local time, Lindell claimed his website was “hacked,” causing the event’s livestream to be delayed.
While struggling to get the event online (it was also aired live on fringe pro-Trump channel One America News) Lindell raged against voting software company Dominion, who had just filed defamation lawsuits against OAN and Newsmax for peddling bogus election fraud claims about the firm’s machines.
“Guess what? After today, you better melt down those machines and use them for prison bars,” shouted Lindell, who has also been sued by Dominion. “And if you're out there now, you should turn yourself in!”
Former Trump chief strategist Steve Bannon—whose War Room Pandemic podcast broadcasted live from the symposium—also suggested Dominion’s lawsuit was filed in order to “kneecap” OAN and Newsmax and intimidate them from airing the event.
“Look, there’s no conspiracy. We’re not conspiracists but there’s no coincidences,” he said.
Finally, after the symposium officially got underway, Lindell spent much of his time raging against not just the usual media targets, including reporters from this very outlet, but also Fox News.
“Shame on you, Fox! They’re disgusting that they haven’t talked about this election!” Lindell exclaimed. “At least we know where CNN and all these terrible outlets come from, but at least they attack, and then we can at least get the word out!”
At one point, while seated at a center-stage table with his so-called experts, Lindell was informed that the event was about to break for a pre-planned lunch, prompting the MyPillow boss to blow up.
“So we’re not going on a break. Put up that movie again. Run that movie again. There’s no breaks,” he huffed. “We’re streaming 72 hours! Live-streaming, around the world. This never stops!”
He continued, gesturing towards the crowd: “You guys can go eat. That’s fine, but I ain’t eating! I’m staying up here for 72 hours before they ruin our signal!”
When an announcer told the audience that “lunch is now available in the back hallway,” Lindell once again demanded that a movie be aired, adding that a featured guest would be giving a presentation.
Yet, despite his promise to “stay up here for 72 hours,” Lindell left the stage a few minutes later.
Symposium enthusiasts needn’t worry, however: The MyPillow CEO was soon back in front of the crowd, ranting against the media and steadfastly insisting that his “scientists” and “experts” were sharing definitive proof that Trump was ripped off.