After GOP criticism, White House spokesman defends Biden’s criticism of MAGA as ‘semi-fascism’

White House press secretary Karin Jean-Pierre on Friday defended President Joe Biden’s remarks comparing Republican ideology to “semi-fascism.”

Jean-Pierre said the actions of the MAGA Republicans fit the definition of “fascism”.

MAGA Republicans (referring to former President Donald Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again”) are “attacking democracy,” Jean-Pierre said during Friday’s press briefing.

“When it comes to the extreme, extreme wing of the Republicans, they attack democracy … by taking away rights and freedoms. They use … threats of violence. They take away voting rights. And (Biden) called it what it is,” said Jean- Pierre.

When asked again about Biden’s comments, Jean-Pierre said Biden has previously compared the actions of Republicans allied with Trump to the definition of fascism, even if he had not used “that particular word” before.

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“You look at the definition of ‘fascism’ and you think what they’re doing to attack our democracy… I mean, that’s it; it’s very clear,” Jean Pierre said.

Broadly speaking, fascism is a political ideology, movement or regime characterized by nationalism and authoritarianism. The Merriam-Webster dictionary states that fascism “exalts the nation and often the race above the individual” – advocating “a centralized authoritarian government headed by a dictatorial leader, a strict economic and social constitution, and the violent suppression of opposition.”

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In remarks at a reception in Maryland for the Democratic National Committee on Thursday, Biden compared the actions of MAGA Republicans to semi-fascism while expressing concern for the nation’s unity and “preserving democracy.”

“What we’re seeing now is either the beginning or the death of an extreme MAGA philosophy,” Biden said. “It’s not just Trump … It’s the whole philosophy that he’s behind — it’s — I’ll say something — it’s almost like semi-fascism, the way he deals with it.”

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In response, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee Nathan Brand called Biden’s statements “abhorrent.”

“Biden has forced Americans out of their jobs, transferred money from working families to Harvard lawyers, and sent our country into recession while families can’t afford gas and groceries. Democrats don’t care about suffering Americans – they never did,” Bradt he said in a statement sent to multiple media outlets.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: White House backs Biden’s description of Republican semi-fascism MAGA”

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