During Friday's edition of Real Time With Bill Maher, one of the panelists, Trump-hating "Republican" and MSNBC Contributor Steve Schmidt, issued a code red; warning of "rising illiberalism" across the western world and talking about President Trump's "fetish for autocracy." Schmidt asked, "it's not the question is it can he lock up reporters, the question is if he could, would he?" Schmidt answered his own question with a "yes" before rambling about how "everyday he assaults our institutions" and how President Trump "assaults the foundational pillars of a Constitutional Republic." Schmidt then tried to compare present-day America to Europe in the 1930s: "fascism did not rise in the 30s because it was strong but because democracy was weak. And we have a crisis in our democracy. Democracy is lubricated by trust, faith, and belief in the system. And it has been eroded singularly by this President's constant assault on every institution that's been handed down as part of our American heritage...and it is appalling."
Steve Schmidt on 'Real Time': Trump Has a 'Fetish for Autocracy,' Compares Present-Day America to 1930s Europe