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Trump’s Threat to Handle the “Vermin” Is Straight Out of the Nazi Playbook

He is planning to purge the executive branch and turn it into a patronage grift for cronies and sycophants if reelected.

Former President Donald Trump delivers remarks during a campaign event on November 11, 2023, in Claremont, New Hampshire.

You might think that after being confronted with the party’s leading candidate for president ranting in public about “Communists, Marxists, Fascist and Radical Left Thugs that live like vermin within the confines of our country” on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” the chair of the Republican National Committee would be compelled to say something other than “I am not going to comment on candidates and their campaign messaging.” But not Ronna McDaniel.

There was a time when a person who would say such a thing would not be the front-runner for the GOP presidential nomination. Oh sure, there were always Republicans who said things like that. It’s right out of the McCarthy era to denounce the phantom “commies” who were allegedly destroying the country. But they weren’t presidential candidates with massive followings. They were cranks like Sen. Joe McCarthy who, with his close adviser Roy Cohn (who went on to advise Donald Trump in later years) ruined a lot of lives with his outlandish accusations. But even he was eventually repudiated by his own party.

Trump’s definition of “Communists, Marxists, Fascists and Radical Left thugs,” it should be understood, isn’t really about ideology, about which he has zero knowledge. They are old Cold War epithets that he first heard as a kid and have come back into fashion on the far right. He’s applying them to his political enemies who are Democrats and certain Republicans who he believes have betrayed him. The rest of his post on Veterans Day, which Kristen Welker failed to recite on “Meet the Press” went like this:

The threat from outside forces is far less sinister, dangerous, and grave, than the threat from within, Despite the hatred and anger of the Radical Left Lunatics who want to destroy our Country, we will MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

I’m so old I remember when Hillary Clinton said in a speech that you could put half of Trump supporters into a “basket of deplorables” and the media had a full-fledged meltdown with the Trump campaign getting the vapors and issuing a breathless denunciation:

Just when Hillary Clinton said she was going to start running a positive campaign, she ripped off her mask and revealed her true contempt for everyday Americans.

It was rich then and it’s even richer now.

Today, Trump is on the stump threatening daily to exact revenge on his political enemies, which includes Democrats, the press, election officials, the Department of Justice and anyone else he believes has crossed him. It is the main theme of his campaign. But calling these enemies vermin takes it to a whole new level and one which has even more resonance than usual with the current discussion of antisemitism. He’s now blatantly using the language of Nazi Germany to degrade and dehumanize Jews in the 1930s.

If I had to guess, I would say that Trump didn’t come up with that word himself. He’s more of a “rats” guy than a “vermin” guy when it comes to rhetoric. And the fact that he repeated the exact phrase from the teleprompter at a rally later in the day on Saturday indicates that it was a speech writer’s work not his own, although it certainly reflects his feelings on the matter. I suspect it was either written or inspired by his righthand fascist, Stephen Miller, featured heavily in yet another chilling article in the New York Times about the Trump agenda for his second term.

We know he plans to purge the executive branch of civil service employees and turn the entire branch into a patronage grift for cronies and sycophants to do his bidding and nothing else. And we’ve learned that he will gut the Department of Justice and plant right-wing lawyers like John Eastman, the architect of the coup attempt after the 2020 election. They will implement the Insurrection Act on the first day of the term to have in place the mechanism to deter and quell any demonstrations like the Women’s March that took place in 2017, dwarfing the inauguration crowds (which Trump has never gotten over.)

None of that is secret and it’s obviously just the tip of the iceberg. The latest Times exposé relates to their plans to completely shut down all immigration and begin a draconian deportation program:

Former President Donald J. Trump is planning an extreme expansion of his first-term crackdown on immigration if he returns to power in 2025 — including preparing to round up undocumented people already in the United States on a vast scale and detain them in sprawling camps while they wait to be expelled.

It goes without saying that he plans to ban immigrants and asylum seekers entry to the country, But he’s got plans to deport millions of people based upon Eisenhower’s “Operation Wetback” which he relentlessly flogged during his 2016 campaign as well. And, yes, there will be “camps” to hold people for whatever purposes they choose, without due process. He will pay for all this with military funds if Congress refuses to allocate taxpayer money for it.

They plan to revoke visas for any foreigners they might disapprove of for any reason. They will end birthright citizenship “by proclaiming that policy to be the new position of the government and by ordering agencies to cease issuing citizenship-affirming documents like Social Security cards and passports to them.” Trump has promised to deny entry to all Communists and Marxists and asked his rallygoers what should be done with “all the ones that are here.” They chanted “deport them, deport them.” Whether that only applies to foreign-born commies is left up to the imagination. Much of this will depend upon the Supreme Court but it’s obvious that Trump will have no problem defying their orders. Who will stop him?

Trump’s rhetoric in this regard is also right out of the Nazi playbook:

“Nobody has ever seen anything like we’re witnessing right now. It is a very sad thing for our country. It’s poisoning the blood of our country. It’s so bad, and people are coming in with disease. People are coming in with every possible thing that you could have.”

The man in charge of drawing up these plans is Stephen Miller, who spoke to the Times about the plans for a second Trump term:

Mass deportation will be a labor-market disruption celebrated by American workers, who will now be offered higher wages with better benefits to fill these jobs. Americans will also celebrate the fact that our nation’s laws are now being applied equally, and that one select group is no longer magically exempt.

I don’t think I need to explain the economic consequences of that.

It’s clear that Trump and his henchmen are planning a Nazi-style administration and they aren’t trying to hide it. His campaign told the Times to speak to Miller who generously shared his agenda with the paper. They want people to know what they are plotting. This time no one should assume that it’s just hyperbole. As Miller told the Times, “bottom line President Trump will do whatever it takes.” Don’t doubt it.

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