Republican ‘dehumanization’ tactics mirror Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin: ex-GOP official Nicolle Wallace
Although MSNBC leans liberal, the cable news channel has some conservative hosts —including “Morning Joe’s” Joe Scarborough (a former GOP congressman) and Nicolle Wallace, who served as White House Communications director under President George W. Bush. Wallace, like Scarborough, is a blistering critic of former President Donald Trump and the MAGA movement — and during a Wednesday, April 20 broadcast, Wallace likened MAGA “dehumanization” of political opponents in the United States to the type of “dehumanization” that comes from Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin where Ukraine is concerned.
Wallace hosted a panel that included three Never Trump conservatives — Matthew Dowd, The Bulwark’s Tim Miller and herself — along with attorney Maya Wiley, who ran in New York City’s 2021 Democratic mayoral primary but lost to now-Mayor Eric Adams. And the four of them discussed far-right Michigan State Sen. Lana Theis’ hateful attack on fellow Michigan State Sen. Mallory McMorrow. Republican Theis, in a fundraising e-mail, claimed that Democrat McMorrow — an opponent of Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law — is trying to “groom and sexualize kindergartners.”
McMorrow lambasted Theis on the Michigan Statehouse’s Senate floor. Veteran Democratic strategist James Carville has applauded McMorrow for calling Theis out, and Wallace’s mostly conservative panel was in agreement with him. Wallace argued that “dehumanization” has become all too common in the Republican “culture wars.”
Wallace told Miller, Dowd and Wiley, “The truth is, dehumanization as a tactic for politics is from war. Dehumanization, it’s a tactic. Speaking of right now, the Russians get the soldiers to rape children by dehumanizing them. Dehumanization, as a practice, is a tactic of war. It’s being deployed in our politics.”
Wallace noted that like Miller, she has “disentangled” herself “from a party we once served and believed it.” And the “Deadline: White House” host and former Bush Administration official made it clear that she finds the GOP’s current direction to be quite disturbing.
“Dehumanizing your opponents is sort of the playbook now,” Wallace warned. “But when (McMorrow) puts what it was like for her to be dehumanized…. it really, I think drives home the consequences of this moment in our politics.”
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