Midterm Election Preview
And. Welcome to words matter. I'm Elise Jordan along with Steve Schmidt. Our goal is to promote objective reality. As a wise man once said, everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Not their own tax words, have power words have consequences. Steve as you. And I know well, this is the time for closing arguments in a political campaign, and as the two thousand eighteen midterm election comes to the finish line. Donald Trump is not talking about the economy. He's not talking about tax cuts or even supreme court justices. He's gotten confirmed. Donald Trump's closing argument about sending active duty military personnel to the United States Mexico border. This is a scandal or should be with Donald Trump is doing. This is the abuse of the United States military for not sensical purposes political purposes in it's wrong. United States military has been at war for sixteen years crossed the Middle East and arrack Afghanistan. These troops have deployed countless times these are regular army troops element to the hundred and first airborne the fourth infantry division, the eighty second airborne division. These are warfighters no doubt their training cycle has been broken. And they are being sent down for a fake mission. This is extraordinarily in that. What Trump is saying is that the country is being invaded being invaded by an army and army that broke through the Mexican border and army approaching America filled with disease, leprosy infested, dehumanized by the propaganda, arm that surrounds, Donald Trump. The American military is trained to fight wars. We're not being invaded. He's making this up out of whole cloth is a remarkable moment that this many people in the country you're susceptible to ally. So brazen so outlandish so grandiose yet. He has the power to act on the lie by ordering active duty elements of the US military to the Mexican border in the largest number of American forces, deployed there since the Mexican war. In a situation where the presence is required because there is no threat last week, the official newspaper of the department of defense stars and stripes reported the specific units that would be deployed by Donald Trump to the border, and it was shocking that those troops include elements of the fourth infantry division than other things with the unit that captured Saddam Hussein also named was the legendary hundred first airborne division. That addition to exceptional valour almost every military operation. Velasco one hundred years was sent by President Eisenhower to Little Rock, Arkansas. Nineteen fifty seven to enforce Brown versus the board of education and protect nine black high school students they lawfully entered Little Rock high school and last, but certainly not least in my house the equally legendary and storied eighty second airborne, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, a division with the motto airborne leads the way and one that my father sergeant Richard Levin. The five third MPP talion tell. You from personal experience is capable of being deployed anywhere on earth in eighteen hours. These troops are among the best of the best. Steve what's going on here? Stupidity of all of this. When you think about the active duty regular forces of the US army that are being sent there. And of course, these are the units that led the way the eighty second hundred first airborne jumping into Normandy the fourth infantry division on Utah beach commanded by general teddy Roosevelt junior storied unit all of them. Having seen many many tours across Iraq and Afghanistan, and they are being deployed under titled ten which means that they can't arrest anybody. They're prohibited. From engaging in any law enforcement activity. So that means they're function on the border is this. They could say if someone was running across the border point to that person and get the attention of someone in the border patrol. Say they're someone running there. You might want to get them. That's all they can do. And you think about how many Christmases how many thanksgivings have any miss Christmas pageants? Birthdays football games, how many wedding anniversaries, how many times these soldiers been deployed? It should be deployed for a nonsense mission. Heading into the holidays disrupting their training cycle is an abuse of the personnel. Do you Queant and the armed forces by a partisan president who is using a scare tactic to throw himself a fake invasion? It's incredible most closing arguments in the last week of a campaign or about accomplishments, either the candidates accomplishments or their opponents lack thereof. These are the final summation about what these candidates and their campaigns are all about this is what they stay. For what do you think of Donald Trump's message over the last week? What's extrordinary about the close to this campaign is the degree to which Donald Trump has utterly completely totally embraced fear and it site -ment as the means to motivate his voters to the polls. He is stoked a cold civil war. It is just remarkable to consider in this aftermath of an assassination attempt on our two. Former presidents the country finds itself at a monumental fork. In the road d- most important midterm election in American history. And it has ended in the most rancid way we see a president of the United States. Donald Trump out there stoking in it citing a cold civil war, which has turned hot on the periphery a man who drove around in a white van festooned. With patriotic images of Trump and Pence together while there were images of Hillary Clinton, and Michael Moore and other figures of the left with rifle targets over their heads. He engineered the largest assassination plot in American history. We saw a man it Pittsburgh who before he entered a synagogue within a are fifteen killed eleven people shot for police officers. What he heard in the vast propaganda industry surrounds Trump. Would he heard is that the Jews were funding? The caravan the caravan coming to America to invade and what he said before he went into murder he said, I can't sit back watch by people be exterminated, screw the optics. I'm going in and anyone he killed eleven Jews. Now, the president has said that there is a way for this violence to stop. And he's been quite clear. About it. He said that it fact it is the media that is responsible for the violence because the media criticizes him we saw a person with the journalism degree on FOX and friends say, well, if the media would just covered things that the president would like to see covered, then the violence would stop this autocratic. Even after the bombs were sent to CNN. We have a president saying that the media's the enemy of the people he saying that they deserve it. There's been no letup on the incitements now in the final weekend. He has audaciously brazenly told the big line the danger of this isn't it's stupidity words vileness or it's malice or it's racist. Intent is that we live in a country. Apparently, the forty percent of the population is ready to fall for ready to buy the idea that. The United States is threatened by invading army and infested horrid bring leprosy and who knows what other disease is this message of fear. Affective? This is a moment. We're Trump's assault on objective truth bears, fruit. We're not only as he wants famously said could he shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and get away with it? But now he can make up out of whole cloth. This idea that America's threatened by invasion, and he will to stop it San active duty element of America's most lethal combat unit to the Mexican border. He'll take them out of their training cycle. And they will go to a political mission the abuse misuse of the United States military in this way is unforgivable in the silence. The silence by senior elected leaders in this country, not talking about the inherent wrongness and the in humanity. And callousness towards our troops who have gone on deployment after deployment after deployment. What about the members of congress? Tom cotton who served in the hundred and first airborne and Lindsey Graham served in the air force these politicians road their military service in office, and they talk about it like the fictional character. Danny Chung from veep. What do you say to them and others on Capitol Hill charged with congressional oversight? Members of congress, particularly the members of congress who served you served in the military served in combat. Have in porn responsibility to be good steward to the American military to watch it be abused misused as political there. So excuse for the military's above politics in this country. It's not a political prop. It is not a force to be used for the president to show power. The military's being deployed out of their training cycles for a mission against threat that is made up completely between the ears of Trump a fantasy for to demagogue incite in stoke fear in the country about the other the other that's coming to invade is this an abuse of power is represented extraordinary abuse of power, the president has no higher responsibility and commander in chief of the US military. What about the other side is the message? They are putting forward that. There needs to be a check on Donald Trump is that an effective message. The fear of Trump can make the argument is a real thing to fear. Because only one of two things can happen after this election Trumpism can be repudiated or will be validated. What does it mean? What does it mean? If a president who in the final weeks resorts to a racial malice that would make George Wallace blush. Incites violence. A continues to do. So even after there's been violent acts who says that the cause of violence is criticism of him that while investigations continue to swirl. He will be completely emboldened. A he'll be completing I restrained in the exercise of his political power. Steve what happens if Trump is not repudiated? Imagine the tone of the election at twenty twenty if the lesson from the two thousand eighteen election is that the Republican majorities were saved by racial. Incitement is that you would see the Republican party the party that began its history talking about free soil and free men become a white identity, blood and soil European style political party, a white ethnocentrism party in battle in a cold civil war against the rest of the country that. Doesn't look like them. It would be old. It would be white. It would be rural. The Democratic Party would radicalize. The magnitude of the failure disappointment would be almost indescribable. Let's for minute. Steve talk about the practical consequences of the validation of Donald Trump put that in perspective for us, and how emboldened will he be the validation of Trumpism has enormous consequences. He would almost certainly act to end the molar investigation to fire rod Rosenstein to fire Jeff Sessions. He would be unobstructed. And he would know that inside the Republican party that there would be no one to challenge him. Not even a Bob corker or Jeff flake who occasionally send it tweet of some objection. There wouldn't even be that there wouldn't even be that. What will it mean on that score Republicans hold the house and hold the Senate? There's nothing to shock anymore. What we see is plainly in front of us. And its meaning is certainly clear in what it would mean is if Republicans were to hold a house in the Senate is that at its first electoral test Trumpism was validated. And it comes down to a jury of one. How will Trump react to it? What he would know is that there was no restraint on the office of the president of the United States that all the criticism all of the negative press. It was his incitements his racial animus, his dishonesty his ferociousness to scapegoating. The carried today at us the era of the investigations will be over. We will not know the truth because he will fire everybody and what he will know for sure. Is there may be some tweets? There may be some outrage that the Democratic Party is no threat, and the Republican party is no restraint. He runs the show. And I couldn't think of him. We're gained outcome for this country in the world right now than that, a Donald Trump who sees it as I actual- contest validation, not repudiation. This is a nationalized election. It's a referendum on Trump. Democrats have a great class of candidates. What it will have man is that the message Trump delivered worked. That beginning with the Cavanaugh hearings and through the end even through the assassination attempt even through the murders in Pittsburgh, even through the nonsensical, deployment of the US military southern border it worked the propaganda work to campaign of fear work, the cold civil war worked is what it would mean. It would that. Would mean is that the bonds of affection entrust wood frame even further that the assault on objective? Truth would be well down the field, and that we live in a country. We're the most prolific liar in American history could lie his way to victory in a campaign of division of incitement in racial, malice that all of us thought was something in America's past. But instead looms as the challenge of our time because it is an inherent threat. A fascistic threat on our. Republican democracy. There's been a lot of talk about Donald Trump's rhetoric and acts of violence like the synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh is there a causal link when Donald Trump declares himself, a nationalist. He is sending a signal to the darkest corners of America. He has mainstreamed white nationalist into a coalition though, maybe not front and center in the rallies presence is always there. It exists on the web the thousands of communications threats. They know exactly what Trump is trying to say, there's a reason that there are sixty percent more eighty semitic incidents in this country this year than there were last year and more last year than the year before why is that was there an early spring rain in the crop of anti Semites in the country has bloomed that suddenly there sixty percent were. Or did the antisemites we have feel emboldened to take action to express what they knew they couldn't express before. Because they've got in the wink in than I'd and there's been more dog whistles more winks to knit the end shouts with bullhorns. Stephen all previous elections at this point in the cycle. We talk about momentum gaps closing what is your sense that? How it's going how this is gonna play on Tuesday. There's been more votes cast in two thousand eighteen in early voting that there were in the entirety of the two thousand fourteen election would that means every model every electoral model is out the window. Nobody knows what's going to happen here. Because of the overwhelming turn out the country's engaged, but people should vote who have fidelity to the American idea and ideal who don't wanna see division who don't wanna see the lying. You don't wanna see the cruelty the incitement, the racial animus. Don't wanna see this get worse. Don't wanna see blood in the. Treats don't wanna see the corruption. Don't wanna see salt on institutions that want to remain connected to the history of the country connected to the March towards our ideas and ideals and not to be part of a movement away from them. This is the most important election in American history at the mid term point between presidential elections. There's never been another one. And there you have it from someone who knows most important mid-term election in American history that will have to be the last word on behalf of myself, Steve alise and all of us at words matter encourage everyone to vote the stakes couldn't be higher, and there's literally nothing more important vote vote in we'll be right back with a lease on her sit down with Senator Roger wicker accorded in your grandmothers. Living in Mississippi. You're not gonna wanna miss this one. Last week, the least sat down with Senator Roger wick. Let's listen. Last week. I was touring around the country doing focus groups and had planned to go home to Mississippi for the weekend. When on Wednesday night, my mom said her fourteen year old dog wasn't doing that. Well, so I called an earlier flight the next day. She picks me up. Unfortunately, are sweet so fi passes away. And she also tells me that since I'm early I could go that night to the First Baptist Church that I grew up in and listen to our Senator Roger wicker who is running for re election in Mississippi. That was the easiest try of Susan Jordan to ever get me to go to church. Unfortunately, I will admit so we decided to go to church in she wanted to keep busy. And as soon as Senator wicker came in. I asked him if he would do an interview, and he very gamely. Agreed any agree to do it. The next day. Will it's great to be with you. I have my happy socks on today. We just opened the the complete Mississippi section of interstate to sixty nine and we have one of the few new interstates in the country in in this in this county, and in the next county over we had a little bit of a technical issue with our recording in my grandmother's living room. So I decided I wanted to tell this interview as a story as a Mississippi story, it wasn't the normal environment that I conduct interviews on this podcast or say on morning, Joe with my mom, and my uncle sitting on the couch across my mom, being very polite southern bell. And I had to ask some questions about Donald Trump's rhetoric and his tone in ten or. Oh, well, I don't like the tuna Replogle rhetoric. These days in America. I was upset about how Donald Trump belittle. Dr Christine blassie Ford in front of Mississippi audience who cheered him on. I asked Senator wicker about his thoughts on Donald Trump's criticism of Dr Ford, our home state and got the back story that it had been a premeditated decision that Donald Trump had outlined flying down to south Mississippi on Air Force One. I was actually there for for that rally. It was it was the soda county rally where the president come into make it emphatically clear that he was endorsing Senator Cindy hod Smith for election. There's an ongoing debate about Donald Trump's rally rhetoric if he is such a master of sizing up his audience in he can see their passion in their energy and cater to. What they want in a given moment or if he's actually plotting in thinking, and there's a strategy to some of his most missin missing in bullying language in this case. There was a strategy. He told me on the way down on Air Force One that that he thought he had been a little too easy own doctor forward in the sense that everyone was well doubting her story everyone was making her into a sympathetic figure. So to made this was the president's way facetiously with some sarcasm there as uses to point out the inconsistencies in her story. I did not view it with the with the outrage that. Members of both parties did. So I wanted to ask Senator wicker who was a deacon in the Baptist church. How he felt about Donald Trump's bullying as a Christian, and this is also coming from my grandmother's living room where my grandfather also a southern Baptist deacon. He were still alive. I I don't think that he would have very much tolerance or high regard for how Donald Trump treats other people. Here's what Senator wicker said. I have been a deacon. I'm not an active. That's the way you as a journalist choose to characterize his conduct in in asking the question. I'm not going to not going to subscribe to that. I don't think it goes far as bullying, he's very fatty course, thank gets his point across in in an unconventional way. And he has a way of connecting to to middle America in a way that that maybe a a lot of have been that have been the politics longer have have been told to avoid you really bullying, you could say to your grandchildren. That's okay, I'm not I'm not choosing to characterize it in that way. I will admit that. It's that it's unconventional. Of course. Donald Trump is completely unconventional. Prefer to talk about the accomplishments and one way or another. He led us to a great center right victory two years ago, and based on that with the Republican bear Republican majority in the Senate majority in the house and the administration he has followed up on promises that that we all made. And so I I just prefer not to get into a long conversation about the way the president touts is words, Senator wicker chalked up Donald Trump's language as unconventional and regarded me as a journalist which was a little unnerving since I was asking him this question from a shared cultural context from the shared context of growing up and being part. Of an evangelical religion in the south. It was interesting to me that it could be unconventional to use that kind of language win. Everything I've been taught previously in church told me that no that's just not behavior that Jesus would exactly be down with. I also asked a question that Senator wicker really doesn't get asked very often in Mississippi is the chair of the US Helsinki Commission, which emphasizes protecting human rights and attacking corruption around the world. It's not something I run on. Yes. But it's incredibly important, you're at the forefront of pushing for fundamental human rights and the decency and dignity that we treat people in the world and stamping out corruption and the in the global Magnitsky act you've been active with. Was one of the three major co-sponsors of the Magnitsky act, which which is designed to show our disfavor on international thuggery in in lawlessness much as as President Putin has done in the Soviet Russia. Senator wicker raised the possibility of sanctions for the Saudi leadership who played a role in the murder of Jamal kashogi points to a real debate about extending global Magnitsky sanctions to to the perpetrators to think of a of a country being prominent on the international scene with a government that that is represented by talented diplomats to think of that government offering such flimsy versions and contradicting themselves and being caught. And then having finally admit that the murder was pre meditated. It's it takes your breath away that the Saudis could be involved in such thing. But every bit of evidence so far points to that. So let's let the investigation go forward. But it looks it looks extremely bad. And and the truth will come out just like just like the truth came out on the murder of Mr. Magnitsky innocent lawyer who was just trying to inform governor is government about it a fraud taking place in Russia. The truth will come out, and we're going to have to let the chips fall where they may. We obviously we'd like to be friends with the Russian people were not very friendly with the Russian government right now the same is true with the Saudis. We we we'd love to have wonderful relations. They reported to us import in the region there. Accountable against Iran. All of that is important, but the the sort of of absolute brutality and outright premeditated murder that that has apparently taken place with the blessing tacit or otherwise of the highest officials in the Saudi government. Its it's a matter of concern we'd have to deal with it. And and it's not something that that we can sweep under the rug. I wish it hadn't happened. Do you think that we should stop arm sales to Saudi Arabia and stop our support of what they're doing the ward Yemen? That's essentially a famine at this point will what's happening with with him. And is is a travesty. I'm not ready to say, we should we should stop the arm sales to our ally. Saudi arabia. I'm not ready to say that. But but it's a debate that we need to have. After the investigations, completing let's get the facts found out how it actually goes in the hierarchy over there. And see what what the reaction of the of the monarchy is it might be that they'll replace the people involved. I would hope that that they would be severely dealt with for murder and once that investigators complete them further dealings needs to be on the table. Whether we stay with for the dealings. Yes. I also put myself out there as a potential debate moderator if Senator wicker would agree to participate in debate. Thank you so much. I think if if there were a debate, you would you would be very very good. We have developed a campaign plan, and it has not included debates. You're a great member of the press. And I will have to say the only people the hull campaign that have asked me about debates. Have been the press, except of course from opponent. He's he's asked about it too. I think we're entitled to run our own campaign. And this is not something the public is is clamoring for so the answer is very doubtful. I'd rather talk to reporters like you much better question. I just love the robust discourse of ideas. And you certainly seem like you have no problem talking about complicated ideas. Absolutely believe that you enjoy the robust discussion about deals and you done a good job of it today. Thanks so much for coming to Holly springs taking to be back in Holly springs. Thank you Elise. Great stuff. It looks like Senator Wicker's afraid to say anything bad about Donald Trump, even sitting your grandmother's living room. And we also want to thank our sponsor audible, we encourage everyone to go to audible dot com slash words, matter and sign up for thirty day free trial. Title audible because words matter. And finally one last time on behalf Steve alise all of us at words matter. Please take the time to vote the stakes couldn't be higher. There's literally nothing more important. Please go out and vote. Thank you. For listening to words matter with the leash Jordan and Steve Schmidt. For more information on our show and hosts visit words matter media dot com.