Jim Clyburn on Fox News defends comparing Trumpism to Nazism: "I've studied history all of my life. I taught history. And I'm telling you, what I see here are parallels to what the history was in this world back in the 1930s in Germany." pic.twitter.com/E7iM4eJE0p
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— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) November 6, 2022
“You’ve repeatedly made comments about Hitler, about Nazism, about Germany in the 1930s in recent years,” Fox News Sunday host Shannon Bream said to the congressman. “You’ve gotten a lot of pushback from that from Jewish organizations and others who say it belittles the suffering of the Holocaust, of the millions who lost their lives. Your response?”
This past Thursday, Clyburn said that Trump’s framing of the media as “the enemy of the people” is similar to how Nazis demonized the press. “This country is on track to repeat what happened in Germany when it was the greatest democracy going, when it elected a chancellor that then co-opted the media,” Clyburn told Fox News Digital.
While some have criticized Clyburn’s comparisons, it’s worth noting that even Trump himself has complained that the U.S. military was not more like Nazi Germany’s. A book on his presidency by reporters Susan Glasser and Peter Baker quoted Trump complaining to his then-chief of staff, Gen. John Kelly, “You fucking generals, why can’t you be like the German generals… in World War II?”
On Sunday, Clyburn expanded his comments. “I’ve talked to many Jews, there are many Jews in my congressional district… and they know that this is the stuff that caused those kinds of deteriorations in democracy,” he said. “This is not anything about how difficult it was. I talk about slavery and how difficult it was. But to discuss the facts of what’s going on here, election deniers setting up procedures by which local committees… can overturn the results of the election. To call the press the enemy of the people. To co-opt evangelicals. I grew up in a Christian faith. [I was] born and raised in a parsonage. I know a whole lot about religion, and I know [in fascism] there is always an attempt to co-opt religions, and that is what’s going on here.”
“If people want to deny it, that’s fine, but the facts are very clear,” Clyburn continued. “I’ve studied history all of my life. I taught history. And I’m telling you, what I see here are parallels to what the history was in this world back in the 1930s in Germany, in Italy.”
“Are voters… to infer from what you’re saying that if they don’t vote for Democrats in this election that they are somehow supporting something akin to the rise of Hitler?” Bream asked.
But Clyburn was not painting all Republicans with the same brush. He clarified that he was specifically talking about people who support candidates who lie about the legitimacy of elections. “No,” Clyburn said. “If they don’t vote against election deniers. If they don’t vote against liars, people who lie, know full well they’re lying, we all know they’re lying. [The 2020 election] was the cleanest election in the history of the country. Donald Trump’s own appointee said it was the cleanest in the history of the country.”
“So if they’re lying, they’re denying, they’re drying to delete, they’re trying to nullify votes,” the congressman concluded, “vote against that foolishness.”
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