'Basket of deplorables' revisited after media scrutiny of Trump's 'vermin' comment

November 29, 2023

You would never guess from the breathless media reports, but Donald Trump's "vermin" comments received comparatively less coverage than Hillary Clinton's infamous "deplorables" remark. 

Major American media outlets like NBC, ABC and CBS gave 18 times more coverage to "basket of deplorables" than Trump's recent comments describing his political enemies as "vermin," a study from left-wing "watchdog" Media Matters found.

Clinton's "deplorables" moment revisited

Libs are sure to spin this "study" as proof that the media are somehow biased in Trump's favor, which is ludicrous.

Clinton's remarks received the coverage they did because of the unusually hostile tone she adopted toward voters and because the incident was correctly perceived as a major campaign blunder.

"To be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic – you name it. And unfortunately, there are people like that. And he has lifted them up," Clinton said at the time.

The comments just solidified the impression in many voters' minds that Clinton was an elitist who felt entitled to the job of president - and who would not even try to be a president for all Americans if she won the election.

Clinton's rhetoric escalates

The "deplorables" remark was proudly embraced by Trump's populist base and was cited as one of the reasons for Clinton's historic loss to Trump.

Clinton's venomous rhetoric has not stopped - if anything, it has only escalated since her crushing 2016 loss.

She recently suggested that Trump "cult members" need to be "formally deprogrammed", but the comments barely attracted notice in the media.

Even as Clinton casually suggests rounding up American citizens to be indoctrinated, the media have screamed in protest of Trump's very reasonable and lawful proposals to detain and deport illegal immigrants.

And they have cited his "vermin" rhetoric to compare him to - of course - Hitler.

But unlike Clinton, Trump's rhetoric was not targeted at members of the public but at people in powerful positions who are hounding Trump.

Trump's full comment was, "We will root out the communists, Marxists, fascists and the radical left thugs that live like vermin within the confines of our country."

While Trump was not specific, there is no indication that Trump was characterizing American voters as "vermin." He used strong metaphorical language to attack corrupt people in the political system.

Nazi Biden?

And President Biden has used troubling, if not outright authoritarian rhetoric throughout his presidency.

Who could forget Biden's vaccine mandate speech, where he declared, "Our patience is wearing thin?"

In arguably the most tyrannical speech ever delivered by an American president, Biden blasted Republicans on the eve of the midterm elections as a threat to "the very foundation of our republic" in front of Independence Hall.

The optics - Biden spoke in front of a notorious blood-red background, flanked by Marines - were widely criticized at the time.

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Thomas Jefferson
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