Republicans are fine with comparing Trump to Martin Luther King Jr. if it will help bury the fact that the Trump campaign solicited foreign help to win the election.
As part of the House Republican effort to oppose and derail the investigation into Trump and Russia, Trump is now being compared to Martin Luther King Jr.
Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) appeared on Fox News and did his part to amplify the right-wing conspiracy theory that the Trump campaign was spied on. Trump and conservatives have been using the story as a smokescreen to evade the fact that prosecutions and indictments of top Trump campaign figures have been ongoing.
Wenstrup was discussing the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) warrants that were approved to monitor senior Trump campaign aide Carter Page after concerns were credibly raised that he had been compromised by a foreign government.
Central to the conservative conspiracy is that the FISA procedure was abused to trigger the probe. Of course, it is now known that the Trump campaign had extensive contacts with foreign operatives. This includes the meeting held by Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner with a Russian operative offering dirt on Hillary Clinton.
Wenstrup told the Fox News anchor, “What our government set up, for us to do, we have oversight over these agencies. If we turn that around, and they feel that they don’t have to answer to the American people, that is a basic problem and a tenet. Look, the types of things that we’re hearing about now — it was wrong when they did it to Martin Luther King, and it’s wrong if they do it to the Trump campaign.”
To put the Trump campaign on a similar footing to Dr. King is absurd.
The FBI and other government agencies spied on and tried to sabotage King as he fought for basic human equality in the United States. The Trump campaign began by describing Mexicans as rapists.
FBI director J. Edgar Hoover wrongly claimed King was a Communist agent, and secretly recorded him in an attempt to blackmail him and get him to leave the civil rights movement. Previously King had called out the agency as “completely ineffectual in resolving the continued mayhem and brutality inflicted upon the Negro in the deep South.”
The Trump campaign consorted with multiple operatives from across the world, including figures from Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, in their attempt to get a leg up in the election. The extent of that coordination is under investigation, and indictments and convictions have already occurred.
King pushed for equality and rights. Trump called Nazis “fine people.”
The attempt by Rep. Wenstrup to compare the two is an insult to Dr. King and the thousands of men and women who worked alongside him to make America great.
Trump and Wenstrup are part of a distraction campaign focused on saving Trump’s presidency, and they seek to drag down true heroes into the swamp with them in the process.