MSNBC’s national affairs analyst John Heilemann claimed on Sunday that there were “30 million people right now who are ready to take up arms” for the former president Donald Trump.
During Sunday’s Meet the Press, host Chuck Todd decided to focused on a recent Atlantic article that claimed Donald Trump’s “coup has already begun”. He found that Heilemann was in total agreement with the piece’s premise.
Heilemann said: “There is this research that shows something like 8% and maybe up to 12% who say that Joe Biden was illegitimate and that violence is a suitable tool to remove him and restore Donald Trump. This represents between 20 and 30 million people,” who he added are ready to “take up arms.”
RT reports: These Trump supporters, he added, represent a “mass movement in favor of political violence.”
In the Atlantic article, by Barton Gellman, it is argued that Trump’s “coup” will “rely on subversion more than violence,” and the January 6 Capitol riot is described as “practice” for the former president. Gellman claims political maneuvering by Trump and his supporters, as well as the installation of the right supporters in the right positions nationally and locally, could lead to a 2024 presidential election that is not decided by ballots.
Gellman’s ‘prediction’ had already faced some scrutiny from people chalking it up as hyperbolic partisanship, and Heilemann’s declaration that tens of millions are waiting in the wings to “take up arms” was met with some eye rolls and criticism of MSNBC for airing such “irresponsible journalism.”
“The last few years have convinced the press that fear – and fear alone – sells,” journalist Drew Holden tweeted.
“Too much of our news has become PANIC TV to get you fearful and grab your attention. It’s irresponsible,” author Daniel Darling added.