Trump’s Apocalyptic Rhetoric

Editor’s Note: Washington Week with The Atlantic is a partnership between NewsHour Productions, WETA, and The Atlantic airing every Friday on PBS stations nationwide. Check your local listings or watch full episodes here.

Former President Donald Trump has never been moderate in rhetoric and action. But there’s a real sense out there that, as he comes under further legal pressure, he’s become more apocalyptic: During a Veterans Day speech, echoing the language of authoritarian dictators, he described his political foes as “vermin.”  

Meanwhile, on Capitol Hill, a rash of angry altercations erupted this week. Former Speaker Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, allegedly elbowed fellow GOP Representative Tim Burchett of Tennessee in the kidneys, and Senator Markwayne Mullin, a Republican from Oklahoma, challenged a hearing witness to a fight.

Joining the editor in chief of The Atlantic and moderator, Jeffrey Goldberg, to discuss this and more are Peter Baker, the chief White House correspondent at The New York Times; Leigh Ann Caldwell, a co-author of The Washington Post’s Early 202 newsletter and an anchor on Washington Post Live; Idrees Kahloon, the Washington bureau chief at The Economist; and Elaina Plott Calabro, a staff writer at The Atlantic.

Read the full transcript [here].

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