President Donald Trump’s celebratory post-acquittal speech really sent waves of nervousness rolling through liberal America on Thursday. Guys: You really didn’t think this was going to come with consequences? What’s the line from “The Wire”: If you come for the king, you’d best not miss. Well, you missed. And you missed with a shot that you KNEW was going to go astray from the very beginning. And now you want to cry that it’s unfair or somehow wrong that Trump might be inclined to take revenge? Well, y’all should have probably thought about that before you started down this dangerous path.
On MSNBC’s Hardball Thursday night, Chris Matthews closed out his program with some nervous-Nelly hyperbole that more or less stands in for all the rest of the hysteria we heard that day.
“President Trump spoke today with the venom of a black mamba. ‘Witch hunt, evil, corrupt dirty cops, leakers, liars, disgrace.’ These were the viperous words he spewed in the East Room on a day he begun at a prayer breakfast,” Matthews said in his closing monologue. “Trump spit vitriol at the Speaker of the House, and the lone Republican senator who dared to remove him.
“As I jotted down Trump’s words,” Matthews continued, “I wondered what they would mean in a country where the targets of such invective were not protected by a Constitution such as ours. They sounded like the language of a dictator unleashing a violent purge that his targets would be unlikely to survive. I have never heard an American president or any figure in our country declare his anger at so many. He was most fiercely unforgiving of those who played a role in his impeachment, from FBI director James Comey to Speaker Nancy Pelosi.”
Oh, you mean the people who subverted the very Constitution that you’re citing? Why the hell should Trump be in a forgiving mood towards them? Especially the day after Pelosi pulled that stunt at the State of the Union? These people have made clear – in their words, in their actions, and even in their bestselling books – that they have nothing but contempt for Trump and his millions of supporters. It would be an insult to us if he tried to make nice with them after this coup.
“The President’s clearly not on the road to either moderation, much less reformation,” Matthews concluded. “And today, there were none of the calls for unity mentioned at his State of the Union just days ago. Trump is making this personal. He wants payback. For the Democrats, this is what it means: They don’t know who they’re running for president. They do know who they’re running against, not Donald Trump, but this Donald Trump!”
Yeah, and the thing of it is: They have no idea what to do. They can’t even get their own primaries in order. They’ve played their best card, and it turned up a bust.
Language of a dictator? No, Chris. This is the language of a man who has overcome the worst demons of Washington. And yes, those demons are right to be afraid.