Oct 21, 2019

O'Rourke says Trump's rhetoric is "perhaps inspired by" Nazi Goebbels

Beto O'Rourke. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke told MSNBC's "PoliticsNation" Sunday there's "so much that is resonant" in the Trump administration of Nazi Germany, suggesting the president may have been inspired by Adolf Hitler's propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels.

"President Trump, perhaps inspired by Goebbels and the propagandists of the Third Reich, seems to employ this tactic that the bigger the lie, the more obscene the injustice, the more dizzying the pace of this bizarre behavior, the less likely we are to be able to do something about it."

The big picture: O'Rourke has previously criticized Trump for his divisive rhetoric and policies, notably calling him a "white supremacist." In April, he said it could be compared to the language "that you might have heard during the Third Reich." Now he's confirmed to MSNBC's Al Sharpton that he believes Trump was perhaps influenced by the Nazis.

  • O'Rourke expressed gratitude for the House impeachment inquiry, which he said was "a good sign" that Trump was caught. He said Trump had told a "big lie" and slammed him for using anti-Muslim rhetoric.
"Outside of Nazi Germany, it is hard for me to find another modern democracy that had the audacity to say something like this and then this idea from Goebbels and Hitler that the bigger the lie and the more often you repeat it, the more likely people are to believe it. That is Donald Trump to a T."

What he's saying: Trump denies that he's racist. He said in August that he's "concerned about the rise of any group of hate. ... Whether it's white supremacy, whether it's any other kind of supremacy. Whether it's Antifa," he said, referring to the far-left, anti-fascist movement. "Whether it's any group of hate."

Go deeper: Trump's premeditated racism is central to his 2020 strategy

Go deeper

Updated 57 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 5:45 p.m. ET: 5,763,122 — Total deaths: 358,235 — Total recoveries — 2,389,735Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 5:45 p.m. ET: 1,715,811 — Total deaths: 101,337 — Total recoveries: 391,508 — Total tested: 15,192,481Map.
  3. Public health: The mystery of coronavirus superspreaders.
  4. Congress: Pelosi slams McConnell on stimulus delay — Sen. Tim Kaine and wife test positive for coronavirus antibodies.
  5. Education: Science fairs are going virtual, and some online elements may become permanent.
  6. Axios on HBO: Science fiction writers tell us how they see the coronavirus pandemic.
  7. 🏃‍♀️Sports: Boston Marathon canceled after initial postponement, asks runners to go virtual.
  8. What should I do? When you can be around others after contracting the coronavirus — Traveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  9. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.

Minnesota activates National Guard amid fallout from George Floyd death

A portrait of George Floyd hangs on a street light pole in Minneapolis. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

George Floyd, 46, moved to Minnesota to improve his life and become his "best self," but instead, he is dead because of Minneapolis police.

The latest: Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz declared a state of emergency and activated the state's National Guard in response to violent clashes over the past two days between police and protesters in the Twin Cities.

Trump signs executive order targeting protections for social media platforms

President Trump signed an executive order on Thursday designed to limit the legal protections that shield social media companies from liability for the content users post on their platforms.

What they're saying: "Currently, social media giants like Twitter receive an unprecedented liability shield based on the theory that they are a neutral platform, which they are not," Trump said in the Oval Office. "We are fed up with it. It is unfair, and it's been very unfair."