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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Who’s Afraid of Calling Donald Trump an Insurrectionist?

An anti-coup provision is not much use with a loophole for self-coups.

In the history of self-defeating euphemisms, Jonathan Chait’s characterization of Donald Trump’s failed coup as an attempt to “secure an unelected second term in office” belongs in the hall of fame, alongside George W. Bush’s “weapons of mass destruction–related program activities” or Kellyanne Conway’s “alternative facts.”

“Alternative facts” clearly meant lies. “Weapons of mass destruction–related program activities” merely reinforced the absence of the very weapons of mass destruction that the U.S. had invoked to justify invading Iraq. And another way of saying “secure an unelected second term in office” is “coup.”

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