On his MSNBC show Saturday Night Politics, Donny Deutsch insisted that Democrats have to warn that the "fascist stuff is coming" in the next two (or six) years of President Trump. It's a funnier idea that liberals have long been forbidden from exploiting fear in their politics, or haven't dared to suggest Trump is a fascist or Nazi or dictator.
DONNY DEUTSCH: Fear factor. Republicans have used definitely used a powerful strategy of fear to win numerous presidential elections. It may just be time for Democrats to tune in the fear factor. Karine, we touched on this in an earlier segment. If you could start to paint a dystopian -- I see a commercial in my head of potential nuclear war, of climate change, of -- most importantly, you're gonna have 30 percent of judges changed over the next years, you'll have Supreme Court judges, probably two more going on there. The world could change for good. Frighten! Use -- it has always been kind of a verboten thing for Democrats to use fear. I think it might be the only tactic.
KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, MOVEON.ORG: So here's the thing. We tried it in 2016 and it didn't work.
DEUTSCH: There was a difference of -- it made it about him versus the world. You don't talk about him anymore.
JEAN-PIERRE: Oh, I see what you're saying. You are saying make it how the world --
DEUTSCH: Don't even put him inthe ad. Show the gray world.
JEAN-PIERRE: Okay, okay.
DEUTSCH: Don't even -- it is a given -- don't spend any more time on him!
Deutsch is an advertising specialist, so he knows it's silly to say an ad showing a post-nuclear apocalypse without showing Trump's face is still very much an anti-Trump ad. It's not focusing on issues. His liberal foil here isn't totally buying it.
DEUTSCH: It's just basically, "This is what it is going to look like, guys," and let's bring in the fascist stuff--
JEAN-PIERRE: The Handmaid's Tale kind of stuff. [As if that's plausible!]
DEUTSCH: And the fascist stuff, 'cause it's coming, it's really coming, you know? Whether it is babies at the border, or -- it's coming.
JEAN-PIERRE: Well, I agree with you on that. I think there's something to -- like painting what this country would look like, another four years of Trump, what would happen if we continue to let this happen or go on with him. I totally agree.
And yet, she insisted you also have to talk issues, like those objectionable tax cuts, or health care. Emily Jane Fox of Vanity Fair took Deutsch on, saying "people are already afraid" and "we don't want to feed into that fear." Deutsch protested: "Why not, though?" She said "because that's what President Trump did," and Deutsch "And they win! The Republicans have done it throughout time, and they win, and we play like nice guys!"
If the last three years of cable-news coverage of Trump is "we play like nice guys," I'd hate to see what fear-mongering looks like.