At a campaign rally in Pennsylvania on Monday night, President Trump accused the FBI and Democratic lawmakers of “spying” on his campaign, an act he said was “treason.”
“We caught ’em — they were spying,” Trump told the crowd. “They were spying on our campaign.”
He continued: “I’ll tell you what — if that ever happened to the other side, this thing would’ve been over two years ago, and you know, it would have been treason. They would’ve called it treason. And that’s what it is — it was treason. And it should never be allowed to happen to another president again. Ever, ever, ever.”
The crowd cheered at his accusations before chanting “lock them up!”
Trump paused and smiled as the crowd continued to chant. Trump then threatened to sic his hand-picked Attorney General William Barr on law enforcement officials who investigated him.
“Well, we have a great new attorney general who is going to give it a very fair look,” Trump said.
Trump accuses the FBI and Democrats of treason. He then has to pause as his fans chant, "lock them up!"
"We have a great new attorney general who will give it a very fair look," Trump says. 👀 pic.twitter.com/TNEoVny7pJ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) May 21, 2019
Walter Shaub, the former head of the federal government’s Office of Government Ethics, called Trump’s accusations “Shades of 1937,” which appeared to be a reference to the rise of Hitler and his Gestapo.
Shades of 1937. https://t.co/de71iHq5pD
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) May 21, 2019
Former Obama administration official Brandon Friedman warned:
Watch this video. See all the red hats. Hear the chants. Then name one country where this happened and it ended well and peacefully. https://t.co/I14gq6vDZx
— Brandon Friedman (@BFriedmanDC) May 21, 2019
Ruth Ben-Ghiat, a scholar on fascism and authoritarian leaders, tweeted:
— Ruth Ben-Ghiat (@ruthbenghiat) May 21, 2019