January 13, 2024 / by emptywheel

 

Scott Perry Explains How Trump, Fox, and Russian Propaganda Made Him Hate Rule of Law

This exchange, between Scott Perry and Dan Goldman, is one of the best depictions of why and how Republicans have come to hate rule of law.

Jared Moskowitz had just called out Republicans for their utter lack of curiosity about Jared Kushner’s $2 billion windfall for monetizing his role overseeing Middle East policy.

Then Scott Perry — who earlier in the hearing had been brutally criticized for his role in a coup attempt — decided to explain what “galls, or troubles us on this side of the aisle.” He claimed that witnesses in the first impeachment lied in their depositions. “Many of us — I was one of them — sat in a SCIF … for an impeachment [calls out Dan Goldman] … knew there were lies being told to compel the impeachment. … abject straight up lies.”

Then Perry turned to the Russian investigation.

Not to mention the fact that, for years, the other side of the aisle pursued the then-duly elected President of the United States based on pure hyperbole about some Russian hoax that has now turned into, you know, it’s the same old thing from the 1930s in Germany and the 1940s. If you tell a lie enough times it becomes the truth. We sat and watched you dismantle the country and the presidency and any agenda that the American people had voted for based on that.

Then he complained that Hillary Clinton sat for a deposition instead of a grand jury appearance.

Look. Secretary Clinton got away with it. She was allowed to be deposed, not under oath, and her deposition on a Saturday, on a holiday weekend. She got to do that. That galls the rest of America who says, when the FBI or the local magistrate or some law enforcement agency comes knocking on my door and says you’re going to appear, you’ve been served.

In response, Dan Goldman spoke about what distinguished the first Trump impeachment from this GOP inquiry: Fact witnesses. But before he got very far into that, Scott Perry had walked out.

It’s tempting to laugh at this, at the hypocrisy of Perry, who blew off a subpoena himself, and then invoked privileges to withhold evidence of an insurrection from prosecutors, to complain that Hillary also got accommodations from prosecutors. It’s even more tempting to laugh that Perry is so stupid he doesn’t realize neither Trump nor his failson — the latter, a private citizen — did even that in the Mueller investigation; he doesn’t realize that Donald Trump couldn’t even manage what Hillary did. It’s even more tempting to guffaw that Perry has forgotten Hillary’s famous 11-hour Congressional appearance during the Benghazi stunt.

It’s tempting to mock Scott Perry for his belief that the Russian investigation was a hoax, even after five top Trump associates were found, via guilty verdict or judge’s ruling, to have lied to cover up Trump’s ties to Russia. Trump’s campaign manager, coffee boy, his National Security Advisor, his personal lawyer, and his rat-fucker — all of them lied to cover up Trump’s ties to Russia in the year before becoming President.

And I have no idea what he’s referring to when he says witnesses in the first Trump impeachment lied. Perhaps it’s a dispute about Alex Vindman’s testimony that Trump’s White House took out a mention of Burisma in Trump’s perfect phone call with Volodymyr Zelenkyy (though ultimately, even Mike Pence aide Jennifer Williams testified the word Burisma had been uttered). Perhaps he’s adopting the renewed Republican belief — based off what Mykola Zlochevsky told an FBI informant around the time that Bill Barr’s DOJ shut down a corruption investigation into him, that he had bribed Joe Biden — that Biden got Viktor Shokin fired to help Burisma, not to reverse corruption.

It’s tempting to dismiss this rank hypocrisy from one of the key figures in an attack on democracy in 2021.

But it’s important to recognize that Scott Perry believes this. Scott Perry actually believes that Hillary Clinton got better treatment than Donald Trump got. Scott Perry actually believes that the Russian investigation revealed no egregious wrong-doing, including strong evidence that both Trump’s campaign manager and his rat-fucker helped the attack by Russian spies, whether wittingly or not. Scott Perry actually believes that Trump didn’t violate Congress’ appropriation authority to try to extort campaign assistance from a foreign leader.

Sure, those beliefs are ridiculous, and easily factually disproven. But as Perry demonstrated by walking out as Goldman spoke, he’s not going to stick around to be exposed to any facts.

One reason Scott Perry believes all these ridiculous things are because he lives in a right wing media bubble, and the default position for those who live in that media bubble is to believe these false claims. If you consume Fox News, you would have no way of learning that these are all false beliefs. None.

Another reason that Scott Perry believes these things is because he was easily, gleefully manipulated by one of the best con mans of all time, Donald Trump. Scott Perry is so gullible he even believed some of the most whack election conspiracy claims in 2020.

He’s an easy mark, Scott Perry is.

And finally, Scott Perry believes these things because he has become susceptible to Russian propaganda, propaganda designed to make easy marks like Scott Perry hate rule of law, prefer his party, “his guy,” over the Constitution.

Scott Perry attacked his country and he did so — he told us at length on Wednesday — because he came to believe a series of false claims, believe them so deeply that rule of law galls him.

It’s tempting to laugh that someone can be so easily manipulated as Scott Perry has been. But Scott Perry succinctly explained why he attacked the country, why he helped Donald Trump attack democracy. And until we come to grips with the series of things that came to make Scott Perry believe absurd things, we will never convince Trump’s believers to adhere to rule of law.

Update: In a recent post on Elise Stefanik, in which I argued that she adopts Trump’s fascism out of naked ambition, I included a rubric I’ve increasingly used to try to understand why Republicans adopt Trump’s fascism. Because folks in comments are discussing similar ideas, I thought I’d include it.

  1. Cowards afraid of his retaliation
  2. People conned by his grift
  3. Utilitarians who believe he’s the only way GOP wins
  4. Adherents of fascism
  5. Christian nationalists

This post argues that Perry believes a bunch of obviously false things, which would put him into the con category. But he has definitely parroted ideologies that would put him into one of the latter two categories.

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Originally Posted @ https://www.emptywheel.net/2024/01/13/scott-perry-explains-how-trump-fox-and-russian-propaganda-made-him-hate-rule-of-law/