Republican Strategist Hammers Fox News, Trump and the GOP for 'Conspiracy' Against FBI

Republican strategist Steve Schmidt offered a clear-eyed take on the conservative lean into autocracy under President Donald Trump's administration during an MSNBC appearance with host Chris Matthews.

Schmidt specifically discussed the "conspiracy" against America's intelligence community as Trump fears for his presidency amid special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into possibly impeachable offenses.

“[I]t’s important to understand that the abnormality of what’s happening here. This allegation that there’s a deep state, that there’s a conspiracy within, that there’s a fifth column in the intelligence services, in the law enforcement community, deeply embedded in the American justice system, that is attacking the Constitution, the legitimacy of presidency of this president, all of this is the hallmark of autocratic behavior,” Schmidt said. “In every autocratic system that’s ever been, there’s always been the allegation of conspiracy. Also, the scapegoating of an ethnic minority and we can think about that insidious and terrible TV ad that the president’s team had up on the air this weekend."

He went on to hold both Fox News and congressional Republicans accountable for aiding in the conspiracy.

“This conspiracy, it’s abetted by members of the Republican majority in the Congress and it’s abetted by a television network that’s increasingly come to resemble state-run TV and an autocratic society much more than it has been as a conservative television network as we would have recognized it in the past,” he added.

Schmidt explained how the conspiracy is a distraction tactic used to prevent Americans from knowing the truth.

“This is a smear campaign directed at these two agents absent any evidence. This is latter-day McCarthyism and it is entirely about what it seems to be about, which is trying to blow smoke around this investigation to obstruct the American people from finding out what went on here at all costs.”

Watch the segment below.

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