Get the day’s best political analysis, news and reporting from the TPM team delivered to your inbox every day. In 30-60 seconds, you’ll be first to see TPM’s best stories of the morning and caught up on what to expect for the day ahead.
World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) issued a statement on Monday detailing the latest chapter in its public feud with Glenn Beck, claiming that the conservative commentator has ducked the professional wrestling organization.
Conservatives have been up in arms lately over a pair of new WWE characters, a heel who draws from the tea party movement named Jack Swagger and his racist manager Zeb Colter. Beck last week referred to the WWE as "stupid wrestling people. That prompted the organization to challenge the former conspiratorial commentator to make an appearance on "Raw," the WWE's flagship program that airs every Monday on Spike TV. Beck turned down the WWE's invitation, saying he's "currently booked during anything else."
The WWE provided another statement on Monday that explains their efforts to get comment from Beck and the inspiration behind the two new characters:
Glenn Beck declined WWE’s invitation to address our fans live on Raw® tonight and then hid from WWE reporters when approached this evening at his studios in Dallas. WWE attempted to get comment from Beck but was unable to gain building access after Beck’s representatives said he was “not in the building,” which clearly couldn’t be the case just prior to his show airing live from the same studio.
Beck referenced WWE as “stupid wrestling people” in a segment that aired on TheBlaze TV last week, criticizing a recent WWE storyline involving WWE characters World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio™, Jack Swagger™ and Zeb Colter™.
Similar to other television shows and feature films, WWE is in the entertainment business, creating fictional characters that serve as protagonists or antagonists. To create compelling and relevant content for our audience, it is important to incorporate current events into our storylines.
WWE is creating a rivalry centered on a topical subject that has varying points of view. This storyline was developed to build the Mexican American character Del Rio into a hero given WWE’s large Latino base, which represents 20 percent of our audience.
WWE also released a pair of videos on Monday, one featuring Swagger and Colter addressing Beck directly and another showing a man visit Beck's office in the hopes of landing an interview.