President Joe Biden gave an accurate description of Trump supporters within the Republican Party, and many people aren’t happy with it.
Speaking at a fundraiser for Democrats, the president said, “It’s not just Trump. It’s the entire philosophy that underpins the — I’m going to say something: It’s like semi-fascism.” He expanded on this at another rally saying, “The MAGA Republicans are a threat to our very democracy. They refuse to accept the will of the people. They embrace — embrace — political violence.”
In a column for The Washington Post titled, “No, MAGA Republicans do not support ‘semi-fascism,” Henry Olsen makes excuses for and defends MAGA fascists. It takes him a while to get to the January 6 Trump coup attempt, but he writes that it “does not justify Biden’s use of the inflammatory label ‘semi-fascism.’” Uh, yes it does.
The attempt to overturn an election, overthrow the government, violate a procedure mandated by the United States Constitution which is the certification of the Electoral College, trying to install an unelected dictator into the White House, and continuing to claim the loser won, is fascist.
Donald Trump called election officials in several states he lost in attempts to get them to reverse the outcome. He literally threatened Georgia’s secretary of state to find him votes. This is some deep-seated Mussolini shit.
And guess what. It didn’t stop there. The Republican Party in multiple states changed election laws making it harder for minorities to vote, thus making it harder to elect the opposing party, the Democratic Party. Republicans in several states have legalized voter intimidation.
In Florida, Ron DeSantis, who is a MAGA Republican, is inserting his own brand of fascism where he’s removing elected Democrats from office and replacing them with Republicans. He’s devoted himself to book banning, voter intimidation, and ruling on what schools can and can not teach. He’s made homophobia a large part of his platform. His favorite word is “woke” and is literally trying to outlaw “wokeism” in Florida.
In another column for The Post headlined “Biden just used the F-word, and he’s correct,” Dana Milbank writes, “Good for him. Those who cherish democracy need to call out the proto-fascist tendencies now seizing the Trump-occupied GOP.”
Milbank points out, “Republican candidates up and down the November ballot reject the legitimate outcome of the last election — and are making it easier to reject the will of the voters in the next. Violent anti-government rhetoric from party leaders targets the FBI, the Justice Department, and the IRS. A systemic campaign of disinformation makes their supporters feel victimized by shadowy “elites. These are hallmarks of authoritarianism.”
A new NBC poll found that a majority of voters cite “threats to democracy” as their top concern approaching the midterms. They’re right for this to be their top concern. We’re all concerned about the economy, inflation, climate change, gun violence, and immigration, but we won’t be able to appropriately deal with those issues if we lose our democracy.
Election deniers are winning GOP primaries in multiple states, which is ironic in itself. If they become governors and secretaries of state, they may throw out elections, the will of the people, if they don’t like the outcome.
Fascists rarely admit they’re fascists. Several candidates ran against Vladimir Putin in 2018, but only one was serious, Alexei Navalny (imagine if the only candidates allowed to run against Trump were Jill Stein and the guy who didn’t know what Allepo was). Navalny was barred from running based on some murky charges of embezzlement. Many of his supporters were arrested and given jail sentences that lasted through the election season. Putin won with nearly 80 percent of the vote. Several precincts had more votes than voters and it’s estimated that Putin received an additional 10 million votes than he actually received. Despite being discouraged by his staff not to do so, Donald Trump called Putin and congratulated him on his “victory.”
In 2020, Navalny was poisoned and then sentenced to over 11 years in prison. But, they never use the word “fascism.”
In the United States, Republicans are encouraging violence against those who oppose Trump. There were death threats against Dr. Anthony Fauci that were inspired by GOP hate and conspiracy theories against him. There have been threats against the Justice Department and the FBI. There was an attempted attack on an FBI field office after the search of Mar-a-Lago. This is fascism.
During a presidential debate, Donald Trump told a hate group supporting him to “stand back and stand by.” After losing the election, he tweeted for his hate groups to come to Washington on the day of the certification of the Electoral College telling them it was going to be “wild.” This is fascism. The people who arrived in D.C. for a “wild” time are fascists.
Olsen argues that nationalism isn’t necessarily fascism…but this is. I expect MAGA Republicans to start goose-stepping any day now. Some have been heiling Trump since 2015.
Milbank sums up his column with, “This is where the MAGA Republicans are taking us. It’s past time to call it what it is.”
He’s right. The only quibble I have with President Biden calling MAGA Republicans “semi-fascists” is the word “semi.” They’re fully-fledged fascists. Let’s start calling them MAGA fascists.
Music note: I listened to Collective Soul.
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