Hillary Clinton just called for ‘formal deprogramming’ of MAGA cult members on national TV

Former Secretary of State and 2016 Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton thinks Trump supporters need to be deprogrammed.

Appearing on CNN this Thursday, she argued that Trump supporters are “cult members” who need “formal deprogramming” to make them “sane” again.

Listen:

As an example of a “sane” person, she pointed to the congressional Republicans who’d voted with Democrats on a continuing resolution to keep the government open.

“You saw the number of Republicans who voted along with Democrats to keep the government open, so there’s clearly a common sense, sane part of the Republican caucus in the House. But I think they are intimidated,” she said.

“They oftentimes, you know, say and do things which they know better than to say or do, and it will require us defeating those most extreme measures and the people who promote them in order to try to get to some common ground where people can again work together,” she added.

She continued by making the case that back in her day, there used to be “bitter battles” over the issues of the day but without the specter of “extremism.”

“That’s the way it used to be. I mean, we had very strong partisans in both parties in the past and we had very bitter battles over all kinds of things: gun control, and climate change, and the economy, and taxes. But there wasn’t this little tail of extremism wagging the dog of the Republican Party as it is today,” she said.

She then tied everything in with her nemesis, former President Donald Trump, who seven years ago crushed her in the 2016 presidential election.

“And sadly, so many of those extremists, those MAGA extremists, take their marching orders from Donald Trump, who has no credibility left by any measure. He’s only in it for himself,” she said.

“He’s now defending himself in civil actions and criminal actions, and when do they break with him? You know, because at some point, you know, maybe there needs to be a formal deprogramming of the cult members. But something needs to happen,” she added.

At this point in the interview, CNN’s Christiane Amanpour asked Clinton “how” exactly she’d deprogram Trump supporters.

“At this point, I think, sadly, he will still be the nominee and we have to defeat him and we have to defeat those who are the election deniers, as we did in 2020 and 2022, and we have to just be smarter about how we are trying to empower the right people inside the Republican Party,” Clinton replied.

Her remarks have since gone viral, attracting criticism in the process from those who liken the “deprogramming” rhetoric to her “deplorables” comments from 2016 — as well as to the rhetoric of historical tyrants like Adolf Hitler:

Clinton’s remarks come after a bitter, internal GOP battle during which then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy tried to push through a shutdown bill that would have cut spending while enhancing border security but was blocked by a small contingent of dissenters led by Rep. Matt Gaetz and supported by Trump.

“Pressure is coming from the inside and outside of Congress, with former President Donald Trump joining the calls of far-right rebels like Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida to shut the government down if McCarthy does not make concessions on immigration policies, money for Ukraine’s war effort, federal spending levels and defunding the prosecutors pursuing criminal cases against the 2024 GOP presidential primary frontrunner,” Spectrum News reported late last month.

The dissenters essentially demanded even more spending cuts. But because they blocked McCarthy’s original shutdown bill, the then-speaker was forced to settle with a continuing resolution containing no spending cuts and border security enhancements.

It’s not clear how Clinton felt about McCarthy’s original shutdown bill, but knowing her, she probably thought it too was “extreme.”

Vivek Saxena

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