Donald Trump wants to get something straight. He’s not a big coup guy.
“Despite massive Voter Fraud and Irregularities during the 2020 Presidential Election Scam, that we are now seeing play out in very big and important States, I never threatened, or spoke about, to anyone, a coup of our Government,” Trump said in response to reporting from a forthcoming book that alleges that Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley — among other top generals — was deeply concerned that the 45th President would lead a coup if he lost the 2020 election.
Which, well, OK. Trump is anti-coup! Except that his statement didn’t end there.
Here’s the next bit:
“So ridiculous! Sorry to inform you, but an Election is my form of ‘coup,’ and if I was going to do a coup, one of the last people I would want to do it with is General Mark Milley.”
So Trump is saying that he’s against coups but if he DID, uh, do a coup, he definitely wouldn’t do one with Milley? That’s not comforting at all!
With Trump, it’s always difficult to grade his degradation of the office of president for a simple reason: He just did so many things that no other person who had served in the office prior would even think of, much less act on.
That panoply of transgressions makes it difficult to say things like “the most dangerous” or “the worst.” There are just so many.
That said, noodling on who you would be comfortable doing a coup with — is that a thing? — is pretty, pretty high up the list of actually dangerous things Trump has said.
Especially when you consider that we, as a country, are just over six months removed from an armed insurrection at the US Capitol that left more than 100 police officers injured, five people dead and nearly 530 charged for their roles in the riot.
The Point: That Trump isn’t seemingly aware of that context — or of the message he sends by talking about the sort of coup compadres he would want (or not) — is par for the course. That doesn’t make it any less scary.