Welp, the president sure is in his feelings today.
During a visit to a manufacturing plant in Cincinnati on Monday afternoon, NBC News reports, Trump called Democrats’ ice-cold reaction to his State of the Union address “un-American” and “treasonous.”
Of course, if Trump had ever tuned in to one of these before, he’d know that partisan stank faces are all but tradition at the SOTU.
“It was bad energy,” Trump told the crowd, referring to the Democratic side of the room, as if he were some poor Master of Fine Arts student explaining why he bombed his open-mic performance.
“You’ve got half the room going totally crazy, wild. They loved everything; they want to do something great for our country,” Trump continued, doing the little accordion thing he does with his little hands.
“And you have the other side”—referring to the Democrats—“even in positive news, really positive news ... they were like death. And un-American. Un-American,” he said.
But y’all’s Crusty Cheese Grit President, being who he is, couldn’t stop there.
“Somebody said treasonous. Mmm, yeah, I guess, why not? Can we call that treasonous?” Trump asked the applauding, laughing crowd. “Can we call that treason? Why not? I mean, they certainly didn’t seem to love our country very much.”
Can we pause for a second here and reflect on the remarkably casual, unaffected way in which Trump leveled accusations of treason against people who were literally sitting there paying him the utmost respect they were capable of giving? Trump is out here, all Mmm yeeeeeah, treason, like he’s gotdamn Larry David explaining why saying “namaste” during yoga isn’t his thing.
For a man whose campaign is under investigation about colluding with the Russians in 2016, your little orange president sure has set one low-ass bar to clear for treason.
Never mind that the whole thing about the other side not clapping is a regular-ass occurrence. It’s the job of the other side of the aisle to sit there, hands crossed and brows furrowed like they’re lactose-intolerant and just ate three soft serve cones from McDonald’s because they got really excited that the machine was working.
Of course, if he’d ever watched one of these things before, he’d know that.
In fact, if he had watched a certain speech to a joint session of Congress, let’s say in 2009, when President Barack Obama was delivering it, he would know that icy silence was a step up from yelling, “You lie!”—as Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) did.
Then, Wilson called his outburst a “lack of civility.” And the White House, through then-chief of staff Rahm Emanuel, accepted Wilson’s later apology.
“We can disagree without being disagreeable,” Emanuel reportedly told Wilson.
As flippant as Trump is about categorizing his enemies as treasonous, and as obvious as it is to a layperson that this dotard is working off the combined triggers of the Russia investigation, the diving stock market (whose gains he just took credit for about a week ago) and some double-cheeseburger meat sweats, it’s important to remember that these words have meaning—particularly to his base.
Calling one’s enemies un-American has been a standard line among a portion of the GOP for some time now, but it’s been such a go-to tactic for Trump and his team that it’s become borderline unremarkable.
It’s the increasing normalcy of it all that ought to have us shook.
At this rate, if Trump keeps tearing pages out of the Little Authoritarian’s Guidebook to Subverting Democracy, there’ll be nothing but the binding left.