Cassidy Hutchinson was once Trump's Chief of Staff Mark Meadow’s right-hand woman. She has a rare gift. She radiates honesty. And in modest, calm tones, Hutchinson conveys Trump’s unstable nature better than a raft of professional pundits. She spoke with MSNBC’s Lawrence O'Donnell on Wednesday night. And painted an image of a reelected President Trump terrifying in its plain-spoken simplicity.
The segment started with a Jan 6 Committee video. In it, Hutchinson described the man-baby’s infamous plate-throwing, ketchup tantrum in the WH private dining room after AG Bill Barr explained there was no election rigging. O’Donnell asked her how many more “such incidents” she had experienced. Hutchinson replied:
“There are several, and that’s probably underestimating it too much, Lawrence. But out of all of the reasons that Donald Trump should never be anywhere close to the Oval Office again — this may seem like a minor one — but his volcanic temper … he deserves to be nowhere near the nuclear code buttons.
She added that the walls of Mar-a-Lago were probably splattered with ketchup.
Many Presidents have been known for their temper. Even the outwardly serene and self-controlled Barack Obama was known to let it fly on occasion. But not since a drunken Richard Nixon flailed around, as his resignation approached, have people seriously thought an unhinged Commander-in-Chief might start a nuclear war in a fit of rage.
At the time, Woodward and Bernstein reported that Secretary of State Henry Kissinger said several times, “If the president had his way, we’d have a nuclear war every week.” And the Secretary of Defense, Elliot Richardson, told generals not to follow any orders from Nixon without checking with him first.
With Trump, the chances of having sober-minded Secretaries of State and Defense running interference are non-existent.
O’Donnell then referred to Trump’s claim he would be a dictator on “day one” and asked Hutchinson if he would be a dictator on “day two.” She replied,
"I think Donald Trump poses an extreme threat to American security and American prosperity. I think a vote for Donald Trump is a vote for a fascist government. I think Donald Trump prioritizes authoritarian rule over the rule of law. And yes, Donald Trump has told us who he is for years and years. So, for him to even joke about being a dictator … we need to believe what he says. Everybody needs to believe what he says.
Hutchinson then warned that our political system is not robust. And alluded to the type of people Trump would hire, as well to the ass-kissing enablers that carry Trump’s water.
“And I think Americans need to understand just how fragile our democracy is. We almost lost our democracy and constitutional republic on January 6th. And the only reason we didn’t is that there were good people in the government who helped it survive. I don’t think we would have that same scenario again.
O’Donnell continued by enumerating a leaked list of potential big-name witnesses set to testify in Trump’s Georgia election interference case.
He tells Hutchinson, “Everyone assumes you are on this list.” She replies with a commitment to rectitude rare in conservative circles.
“If/when I am asked to testify in any of the trials, I will do so. Not only out of a sense of legal and moral obligation to the courts and our legal system, but I also believe it is a duty I owe to the American people. The American people need to know what happened. And the American people need people to make judgments for themselves.
Hutchinson then expresses a wish — while acknowledging the turpitude of the typical Trump hire and MAGA lackeys.
“I hope all the people on your list would comply fully with their subpoenas and testify truthfully. I have some doubts about a few of them. If past is precedent, I think they will try to stiff-arm, which I think is unfortunate for our system and is completely selfish. And they should be nowhere near power, But that is what we also need to focus on in 2024 — is electing responsible, good, trustworthy people to higher office to make sure we can preserve our country.”
O’Donnell then asks Hutchinson about her ex-boss, Mark Meadows. She hesitates in her reply before speaking wistfully of him as a father and grandfather. Hutchinson says Meadows needs to set the record straight. She adds he still has an opportunity to do the right thing — and testify to the DoJ, in any court, and to any government body to get out of Trump’s shadow.
The interview ends with Hutchinson extolling Liz Cheney and complimenting her book, Oath and Honor: A Memoir and a Warning, — calling it one of the most “profound works of American literature.” She believes scholars will study it the same way they analyze the works of the Founding Fathers. I will take her word for it.
Hutchinson is soft-spoken, but she offers a hard truth. If you vote for a guy who says he will be a dictator, you will elect a fascist. Yes, it can happen here.