Border Wall is Donald Trump's 'Erogenous Zone,' 'Build The Wall' Chants Rile Up President, Supporters, MSNBC Guest Says

Politics author John Heilemann said the southern border wall is President Donald Trump's "erogenous zone," saying discussion of the 2016 "campaign lie" brings Trump immediate, almost sexual gratification.

Heilemann, who co-wrote one of the definitive 2012 presidential campaign books, Double Down: Game Change 2012, about the race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, told MSNBC's Joe Scarborough Monday he thinks Trump is desperately pushing for the border wall because that "particular big lie" was at the center of his own 2016 presidential campaign. Heilemann said Trump and his supporters become almost sexually aroused during chants of "Build the wall," which were highly prevalent during his campaign events.

But now Trump has to live down that 2016 campaign chant as a legitimate 2019 congressional request for about $5.7 billion. If not, he risks losing his base before the 2020 election.

The NBC News and MSNBC national affairs analyst said Americans must begin "looking at the foundations of not just the kind of edifice of lies of the Trump administration—but this particular big lie—that was at the core his [2016] campaign."

"We all know that is the thing—it's Trump's erogenous zone, right?" Heilemann continued. "He just gets all excited to hear everybody else get all excited and this particular lie has the quality that he craves most, which is that it provides that instant dopamine hit."

john heilemann
Heilemann, who co-wrote one of the definitive 2012 presidential campaign books, “Double Down: Game Change 2012,” about the race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, told MSNBC's Joe Scarborough Monday he thinks Trump is desperately pushing for the border wall because that "particular big lie" was at the center of his own 2016 presidential campaign. Getty Images CRAIG BARRITT/Stringer

Heilemann is not the first person to frame Trump's touting of the wall in the context of sexuality. Last month, the now-Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, compared how Trump views the wall to how he views his own "manhood."

Heilemann noted the entire "Build the wall" slogan was always just a tossaway Trump line he'd use to amp up campaign rallies with low energy.

"Trump was on the record in 2016 basically saying, you know, 'Whenever one of my rallies seems to be flagging, whenever it seems there's not enough energy in the room, I've discovered that the go-to thing...I just say "Build that wall.' It riles everybody up and it sparks all this energy and enthusiasm in the room," he continued.

Last January, Trump tweeted, "The Wall is the Wall, it has never changed or evolved from the first day I conceived of it." But in reality, Trump has tossed out several changes in language and intention, with Lindsey Graham even going so far as to recently label the wall a "metaphor for border security."

In November 2017, Trump told Fox News the wall wouldn't be as necessary as he'd previously claimed. "You have 2,000 miles. You have mountains, you have rivers, you have things that you don't put the wall in, you don't need them." And Trump infamously claimed "the wall just got 10 feet higher" after several spats with a former Mexican president.

"He became wedded to it because it was so reliable on that front," Heilemann said. "The facts don't matter to him in those situations and it continues to be the case that he holds it now very close for the same reasons," Heilemann concluded Monday.

Correction: A previous version of this article inaccurately referred to Nancy Pelosi as "House Majority Leader."