Joe Scarborough returned to an old canard on Monday, blasting President Donald Trump for adopting what he said was the language of Joseph Stalin when talking about the media.
“I look at Donald Trump and I look at the horrors of Donald Trump’s presidency, the violence that he does to constitutional norms, the contempt he has for the rule of law, the Stalinist phrases that he trots out when he speaks about the free press that our founders saw as really the corner stone of the bill of rights,” said Scarborough in the first hour of Monday’s “Morning Joe.”
And while the MSNBC host was visibly despondent, the monologue focused on how he was nevertheless hopeful at how robust U.S. institutions had been in withstanding the Trump assault.
“I am hopeful from what I’ve seen so far about how Americans are responding to this great challenge,” he added. “We seem to be responding, I think, so far with passing grades as a country for a man who understands America and understands American values even less than he understands what’s going on around the world and America’s place in the world.”
The show which has become famous for regular broadsides against the president and routinely employs 20th-century dictators as a rhetorical device. In the past, Mao and Kim Jong-Un have also been trotted out to make anti-Trump points.
The renewed talk of Stalin is likely a result of Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Arizona), who said on Sunday that President Trump’s use of the term “enemy of the people” was a direct allusion to how Stalin addressed the media during his own rise to power in the Soviet Union.
“He borrowed that phrase, it was popularized by Joseph Stalin, used by Mao as well — enemy of the people,” he said.
— Kasie DC (@KasieDC) January 15, 2018