A rich white Republican male just can’t catch a break in America in 2017. That’s the message Donald Trump, Jr. sent to conservative students Tuesday as he promoted a wild conspiracy at the center of his father’s Trump-Russia defense.
Over the past several days, President Trump and his talking heads in the right wing media have been engaged in a desperate P.R. offensive against special counsel Robert Mueller. Specifically, they’ve been exploiting Mueller’s decision to remove FBI agent Peter Strzok from the investigation in August for sending anti-Trump text messages and emails to his mistress and others during the election.
That revelation gave them all the opening they needed to open an all-out attack on the credibility of Mueller’s investigation. Some on FOX News even calling for the special counsel to be arrested – never mind that he did the right thing when he demoted Strozk and two other agents.
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Now Donald Trump, Jr. is parroting this talking point, delivering it with a straight face to young Republicans at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in Florida Tuesday. His message echoed what we’ve been hearing from the rest of Trump’s freaked-out followers, but with a new, racially tinged twist.
“My father talked about a rigged system throughout the campaign, and people were like, ‘Oh, what are you talking about?'” he said. “But it is. And you’re seeing it.”
President Trump is the victim, according to this conspiracy theory, and the government is out to destroy him. How is Trump, Jr. so certain? Because his father is a white man, and this would never happen to him if his skin was brown.
“Imagine what would happen if we rolled back the clock to 2008, and a conservative director of the FBI, and high-up people in the FBI, that were leading all these investigations, wrote an email about needing an insurance policy in the unlikely even that Barack Obama was elected president.”
“What do you think would happen?” he continued. “Do you think the media would cover that? Yeah. Do you think it would be brushed under the rug like, ‘Oh, it’s nothing. It doesn’t mean anything.’ There’d be revolution in the streets.”
This is classic dog-whistle rhetoric tuned specifically for his racist, xenophobic base who are convinced minorities get all the breaks in America and get special treatment by the government at their expense.
Trump, Jr.’s desperate pleas to this base, though, aren’t designed to lift them up or address their grievances, however manufactured they may be. No, they are designed to stoke their deepest fears for no other reason than to protect his family’s tenuous grip on power.
It’s not just President Trump who stands to lose from Mueller’s investigation, as Don, Jr. faces his own legal problems related to Russia. Earlier this month, he testified before congress in closed-door hearings over his role setting up a secret meeting with Russian operatives at Trump Tower to receive dirt on Hillary Clinton during the campaign. So he more than anyone is aware of the substantial role the Russians played during the 2016 presidential election.
Which begs the question: Are the members of the Trump family lying to us when they insist the Trump-Russia scandal is fake news fabricated by hostile FBI, or are they lying to themselves?
No need to speculate. We’ll get that answer when Robert Mueller finished his investigation, assuming he isn’t fired before hand.
You can watch Donald Trump, Jr.’s conspiracy theory lecture below: