MSNBC host Chris Matthews on Monday compared President Donald Trump’s repeated attempts to deceive the American people about special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election to Adolf Hitler deceiving Germans about the invasion of Poland.
Totally clears the President. Thank you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 7, 2018
“What is Trump saying to anybody who’s listening—it clears me? Is he just talking to his 40 percent who believes anything he says?” Matthews asked.
“He feels like he can use his megaphone, his Twitter handle to communicate directly to his supporters to tell them what to believe, and they’re banking on—he and his advisers are banking on those tens of millions of Americans out there to believe him,” Washington Post reporter Philip Rucker said. “So when he says he’s totally clear, they will think he’s totally cleared.”
“I guess it’s like the Germans believed that the name who we never can quote or never mention said that Poland invaded Germany,” Matthews added. “That’s why World War II started. Poland invaded Germany, remember? He was able to get away with that baby.”
Matthews’s comments come days after federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York implicated Trump in a scheme to silence women who alleged during the 2016 campaign that they had extramarital affairs with him before he became president, according to court documents.
Friday’s sentencing memo marked the first time federal prosecutors sought to directly connect the president to those campaign finance violations, writing that Cohen acted “in coordination with and at the direction of” Trump, who was referred to as “Individual-1” in the court filing.
“While many Americans who desired a particular outcome to the election knocked on doors, toiled at phone banks, or found any number of other legal ways to make their voices heard, Cohen sought to influence the election from the shadows,” prosecutors in New York wrote Friday. “He did so by orchestrating secret and illegal payments to silence two women who otherwise would have made public their alleged extramarital affairs with Individual-1,” referring to President Trump.
“In the process,” prosecutors continued, “Cohen deceived the voting public by hiding alleged facts that he believed would have had a substantial effect on the election.”
In 2015, Matthews likened the president’s treatment of reporters to that of dictator Saddam Hussein’s.
“It’s almost like you used to read about in the days of Baghdad under Hussein, where you didn’t want to be in a restaurant with one of his kids, because they might make eye contact with you and you might make eye contact with one of their girlfriends at the time, and you’re dead the next day,” he said. Matthews has also compared Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell to Hussein.