“We’re going to clamp down very, very strong”

More on Trump’s proto-fascist rant this morning:

On a video teleconference, the president warned that the law enforcement presence across Washington is set to intensify later Monday. He said the protests are ruining the nation’s standing on the world stage. And he called on governors to pass new bans on flag burning, a constitutionally protected expression of free speech.

“Washington was under very good control, but we’re going to have it under much more control,” Mr. Trump said, according to audio of the meeting obtained by CBS News. “We’re going to pull in thousands of people.” He added later: “We’re going to clamp down very, very strong.”

“You’re making a mistake because you’re making yourselves look like fools,” he told the governors at one point. “And some have done a great job. But a lot of you, it’s not – it’s not a great day for our country.”

One participant on the call described the president’s words and tone as “unhinged.”

He’s got bunker-fever.

The president said that the violence “is coming from the radical left — you know, it everybody knows it — but it’s also looters, and it’s people that figure they can get free stuff by running into stores and running out with television sets. I saw it — a kid has a lot of stuff, he puts it in the back of a brand new car and drives off. You have every one of these guys on tape. Why aren’t you prosecuting them? Now, the harder you are, the tougher you are, the less likely you’re going to be hit.”

He’s very worked up about looters stealing tv sets, far more worked up than he ever was about the police murder of George Floyd.

This kind of violence has happened before, Mr. Trump said. “It’s happened numerous times. And the only time it’s successful is when you’re weak. And most of you are weak. I will say this, what’s going on in Los Angeles — I have a friend lives in Los Angeles — they say all the storefronts are gone,” the president continued. “They’re all broken and gone. The merchandise is gone. It’s a shame. It didn’t look as bad to me — maybe it was the sunshine, I don’t know. But in Los Angeles, the storefronts are gone. Philadelphia’s a mess. What happened there is horrible.”

The murder of George Floyd, not so horrible.

“If you’re weak and don’t dominate your streets, they’re going to stay with you until you finally do it,” Mr. Trump said. “And you don’t want it. Philadelphia, you’d better toughen up. Because what’s going on in Philadelphia, like New York, is terrible. It’s terrible. You’d better toughen — they’ll never leave. I know you want to say, ‘Oh, let’s not call up the Guard, let’s call up 200 people.’ You’ve got a big National Guard out there that’s ready to come in and fight like hell. I tell ya, the best, what they did in Minneapolis was incredible.”

“You’ve got to arrest these people. You’ve got arrest these people — and you’ve got to charge them,” the president said to the governors. “And you can’t do this deal where they get one week in jail. These are terrorists, these are terrorists, they’re looking to do bad things to our country. They’re Antifa and they’re radical left.”

Mentioning Barr, the president said, “Bill —… if a brick is thrown at somebody, and it hits them, or maybe if it doesn’t hit them, your very tough, strong, powerful people are allowed to fight back against that guy. And very strongly and powerfully.”

He longs to watch violence against civilians on his teevee tonight. He’s panting with excitement.

Illinois Democratic Governor J.B. Pritzker called on the president to tone down his political rhetoric. “We have to call for calm, we have to have police reform called for. … The rhetoric coming out of the White House is making it worse.”

“I don’t like your rhetoric much, either,” the president said before moving on. “But that’s okay, we don’t agree with each other.”

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