Fascism is defined as "a political philosophy, movement, or regime that exalts nation, and often race, above the individual and that stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition." (Merriam-Webster)
Trump's campaign began with an attack on Mexicans and mobilized under the slogan of Make America Great Again. His early moves after his inauguration hold many of the hallmarks of fascism.
This page will track Trump's actions that tend toward fascism.
|2015.12.08||Trump says he might have supported Japanese Internment if he was alive at the time. time.com (See also 2016 Campaign, Asian Americans, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2016.03.05||Trump directs a crowd of supporters to raise their right hands and asks them to "pledge" allegiance — not to the flag but to Trump. washingtonpost.com (See also 2016 Election)|
The supporters raised their arms en masse, evoking scenes from Nazi Germany.
|2016.12.03||Philippine Dictator who has been indiscriminately murdering thousands of accused "drug users" says Trump called and told him he was tackling drug problems 'the right way.' cnn.com (See also Presidential Transition)|
|2017.01.19||The military turns down a suggestion from Trump's team for tanks and missile launchers at the inaugural parade finance.yahoo.com (See also Presidential Transition)|
|2017.01.20||Trump strikes nationalistic tone in his inaugural address. wsj.com (See also Presidential Activity, Unprecedented Actions)|
Historians and speechwriters describe the speech as one of the most ominous inaugural addresses ever, reinforcing familiar campaign themes of American decline, in contrast to the inspirational speeches of his predecessors.
|2017.01.20||Trump's embraces use of "America First" slogan despite its long anti-Semitic and isolationist history. latimes.com (See also Jewish Americans, Anti-Semitism)|
|2017.01.21||Report says Trump gave CIA secret permission to carry out drone strikes. wsj.com (See also First 100 Days)|
|2017.01.25||Trump signs an executive order on Sanctuary Cities that vaguely declares it illegal to "facilitate the presence of aliens." univision.com (See also Immigration, Immigrants, First 100 Days, Mexican Americans)|
This could mean helping undocumented immigrants now a crime under Trump.
|2017.02.01||"Trump: "If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view - NO FEDERAL FUNDS?" twitter.com (See also Education, Assaults on Facts, Censorship)|
Trump threatens University of California at Berkeley for allowing anti-Breitbart demonstration.
|2017.02.01||Trump Immigration Ban disrupts international research collaboration on public health and disease. scientificamerican.com (See also Unprecedented Actions, Social Issues, Nationalism, Muslim Immigration Ban)|
The ensuing damage to scientific collaboration puts the U.S. at risk, researchers say
|2017.02.07||Trump jokes about destroying the career of a Texas State Senator who introduced legislation a sheriff he met with opposes. cnbc.com (See also First 100 Days)|
|2017.02.18||Trump delivers misstatements and exaggerations to enthusiastic believers in first rally of his 2020 campaign. nytimes.com (See also Nationalism, Attempts to Discredit Media, Assaults on Facts)|
|2017.02.22||The Trump administration issues new immigration policies with the goal of empowering agents to strictly enforce deportation laws. washingtonpost.com (See also Immigrants, Nationalism, Immigration)|
|2017.02.22||Trump's DHS Secretary, John Kelly, lays out aggressive guidance for vigorously pursuing illegal immigrants. cnn.com (See also Nationalism, Immigrants, Immigration, Department of Homeland Security)|
|2017.02.24||Hours after Trump criticizes as “fake news” organizations that publish anonymously sourced reports that reflect poorly on him, including those tying his associates to Russia, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer bars many major news organizations from a White House briefing. nytimes.com (See also Attempts to Discredit Media, Sean Spicer)|
|2017.03.10||Trump abruptly orders 46 Obama appointed Federal Prosecutors to resign. nytimes.com (See also First 100 Days, Department of Justice, Assaults on Government)|
The president told the holdover United States attorneys to tender their resignations immediately, including — surprisingly — Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan.
|2017.04.06||Twitter files lawsuit after the The Department of Homeland Security demands they reveal the identity of several Twitter accounts posting information critical of Trump. variety.com (See also First 100 Days, John Kelly, Department of Homeland Security, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2017.08.07||After Senator Richard Blumenthal voiced support on television for continuing the investigation into Russian meddling in last year's election, and expressed concern about the Justice Department’s increased focus on rooting out administration officials who leak information damaging to Trump, the President tweeted that the Senator was "a phony Vietnam con artist," and that "he cried like a baby." washingtonpost.com (See also Unpresidential Behavior, Russian Meddling in Election)|
|2017.08.07||Trump’s daughter-in-law is “running the show” at his Trump TV project funded by his reelection campaign. thedailybeast.com (See also Trump Family, Eric Trump, Assaults on Facts, Attempts to Discredit Media)|
The quasi-propaganda videos are made in Trump Tower, overseen by the president’s daughter-in-law, and using campaign cash to pay for them.
|2017.08.08||The Justice Department has reversed its position in a high-profile voting case in Ohio, siding with the state in its effort to purge thousands of people from its rolls for not voting in recent elections. washingtonpost.com (See also Department of Justice, Jeff Sessions)|
The move is part of a broader campaign by the Trump administration to support restrictions on who is eligible to vote, a radical change in philosophy from the previous Justice Department, which sued a number of states over voting laws that it deemed discriminatory against minorities.
|2017.08.10||About half of Republicans say they would support postponing the 2020 presidential election until the country can address large-scale voter fraud, which is not a problem in the United States. washingtonpost.com (See also False Statements, Assaults on Facts)|
A significant number of Republicans would support flagrant violations of democratic norms.
|2017.08.14||Web hoster DreamHost says it has been asked to hand over to the Justice Department more than 1.3 million IP addresses on visitors to a site that helped organize anti-Trump protests earlier this year. forbes.com (See also Department of Justice, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2017.08.24||U.S. prosecutors prevailed in their request to seek information about subscribers to an anti-Trump website allegedly linked to rioting during the inauguration. bloomberg.com (See also Legal Activity, Criminality)|
A judge in District of Columbia Superior Court on Thursday ordered DreamHost LLC, the host of the website disruptj20.org, to comply with a government warrant seeking information about the site’s subscribers.
|2017.08.27||The Trump administration Monday lifted a controversial ban on the transfer of surplus military equipment to police departments whose battlefield-style response to rioting in a St. Louis suburb three years ago prompted a halt to the program. usatoday.com (See also Domestic Policy)|
The new plan takes effect immediately and fully rolls back an Obama administration executive order that blocked armored vehicles, large-caliber weapons, ammunition and other heavy equipment from being re-purposed from foreign battlefields to America's streets.
|2017.08.28||Donald Trump signed an executive order rescinding former President Barack Obama's restrictions on the transfer of military-style equipment from the Department of Defense to local law enforcement agencies. politico.com (See also Department of Defense, Jeff Sessions)|
|2017.09.25||The Department of Homeland Security is planning to collect social media information on all immigrants, including permanent residents and naturalized citizens, a move that has alarmed lawyers and privacy groups. buzzfeed.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Nationalism, Department of Homeland Security)|
|2017.09.29||The Justice Department is demanding that Facebook turn over information from three accounts that could provide access to the personal details of thousands of activists who expressed interest in anti-Trump rallies. nbcnews.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2017.10.03||The Trump Administration launched what it called the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement (VOICE) hotline, with a stated mission to “provide proactive, timely, adequate, and professional services to victims of crimes committed by removable aliens,” but internal logs of calls to VOICE show that hundreds of Americans seized on the hotline to lodge secret accusations against acquaintances, neighbors, or even their own family members, often to advance petty personal grievances. splinternews.com (See also Immigration)|
|2017.10.04||A Texas judge has dealt a blow to Donald Trump’s voter fraud commission, ruling that state officials would be violating state privacy laws if they hand over voters’ personal information to commission members. thedailybeast.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Legal Issues)|
The commission has asked state election officials to share specific voter information, voters' felony conviction history, voter history, and partial Social Security numbers, along with a host of other details.
|2017.10.05||Despite the fact that only half of Puerto Ricans had access to drinking water and only 5% of the island has electricity, FEMA has removed any statistics about drinking water access and electricity in Puerto Rico from its website. washingtonpost.com (See also Assaults on Facts)|
|2017.10.09||A judge ordered the web hosting company DreamHost to redact identifying information about visitors to a website used to coordinate a protest during Donald Trump’s inauguration, imposing further limits on an extensive warrant obtained by the Justice Department that initially aimed to collect visitors’ IP addresses. gizmodo.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Department of Justice)|
|2017.10.17||Republican Senator John McCain implicitly excoriated Donald Trump's administration and supporters, saying that "to refuse the obligations of international leadership ... for the sake of some half-baked, spurious nationalism ... is as unpatriotic as an attachment to any other tired dogma of the past." buzzfeed.com (See also Nationalism)|
|2017.11.08||The U.S. Department of Justice has told AT&T that it would be required to sell CNN as a condition of approval for its proposed $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner, adding that AT&T is opposed to such a divestiture, and is prepared to take the Trump Administration to court. axios.com (See also Conflicts of Interest, Unprecedented Actions, Jeff Sessions, Department of Justice, Legal Issues)|
|2017.11.16||Federal regulators rolled back decades-old rules, making it far easier for media outlets to be bought and sold — potentially leading to more newspapers, radio stations and television broadcasters being owned by just a small handful of companies. washingtonpost.com (See also Censorship, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2017.12.05||Donald Trump’s voter fraud commission, after this summer's sweeping request to state officials to submit voter data, plans to create a massive voter database, which could be manipulated, leading the administration to wrongfully purge legitimate voters. washingtonpost.com (See also Unprecedented Actions, Voter Suppression, Voter Fraud)|
|2017.12.15||The Trump administration is prohibiting officials at the nation’s top public health agency from using a list of seven words or phrases — including “fetus” and “transgender” — in official documents being prepared for next year’s budget. washingtonpost.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Assaults on Facts)|
Policy analysts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta were told of the list of forbidden terms with senior CDC officials who oversee the budget, according to an analyst who took part in the 90-minute briefing. The forbidden terms are “vulnerable,” “entitlement,” “diversity,” “transgender,” “fetus,” “evidence-based” and “science-based.”
|2017.12.17||Across the country, at different offices of the EPA, employees that raised concerns were told to submit copies of any emails written by them that mentioned either Scott Pruitt or Donald Trump, or any communications with Democrats in Congress that might have been critical of the agency. nytimes.com (See also Scott Pruitt, Environmental Protection Agency, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2017.12.21||On the orders of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Justice Department prosecutors have begun asking FBI agents to explain the evidence they found in a now dormant criminal investigation into a controversial uranium deal that critics have linked to Bill and Hillary Clinton. nbcnews.com (See also Jeff Sessions, Belief in Conspiracy Theories, Department of Justice)|
|2018.01.02||Donald Trump on Tuesday appeared to suggest that Huma Abedin, a former top aide to Hillary Clinton, should face jail time, days after the State Department posted emails found on her estranged husband’s computer that included confidential government information. washingtonpost.com (See also Belief in Conspiracy Theories, Assaults on Civil Liberties, Department of State, Department of Justice)|
|2018.01.02||Donald Trump's pick to run Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) called for a crackdown on so-called sanctuary cities, saying politicians who help run them should be charged with crimes. thehill.com (See also Immigration, Jeff Sessions, Department of Justice)|
|2018.01.17||Republican U.S. Senator Jeff Flake castigated Donald Trump for his attacks on the media, saying Trump had embraced the despotic language of former Soviet dictator Josef Stalin and inspired modern-day authoritarians. reuters.com (See also Nationalism, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2018.05.09||Donald Trump raised the prospect of taking away credentials from news media outlets that he believes are reporting negatively on his administration. washingtonpost.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, False Statements)|
|2018.05.18||President Trump has personally pushed U.S. Postmaster General Megan Brennan to double the rate the Postal Service charges Amazon.com and other firms to ship packages. washingtonpost.com (See also Unpresidential Behavior, Conflicts of Interest)|
Brennan has so far resisted Trump’s demand, explaining in multiple conversations occurring this year and last that these arrangements are bound by contracts and must be reviewed by a regulatory commission. She has told the president that the Amazon relationship is beneficial for the Postal Service and gave him a set of slides that showed the variety of companies, in addition to Amazon, that also partner for deliveries.
|2018.05.20||Donald Trump demanded that the Justice Department investigate whether the department or the F.B.I. “infiltrated or surveilled” his campaign at the behest of the Obama administration, following through on his frequent threats to intervene in the special counsel inquiry as he targets those he views as political enemies. nytimes.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Assaults on Government, Legal Issues, 2016 Campaign)|
|2018.05.21||Donald Trump went beyond his usual tactics of suggesting wrongdoing and political bias by those investigating him, and crossed over into applying overt presidential pressure on the Justice Department to do his bidding. nytimes.com (See also Conflicts of Interest, Legal Issues, Department of Justice)|
Legal experts said President Trump’s promise of intervention had little precedent, and could force a clash between the sitting president and his Justice Department.
|2018.05.24||Donald Trump, when speaking about new rules that the NFL has imposed said, "You have to stand proudly for the national anthem or you shouldn’t be playing, you shouldn’t be there — maybe you shouldn’t be in the country." axios.com (See also Nationalism, Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2018.07.02||The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services is creating a new Denaturalization Task Force, designed to revoke the citizenship of American citizens and deport them, based on what they claim are "bad naturalization cases." wnycstudios.org (See also Immigration, Nationalism)|
|2018.07.19||Donald Trump's military parade in DC, currently scheduled for November 10th, is likely to cost nearly as much as the now canceled military exercise with South Korea that Trump called "tremendously expensive" and said cost "a fortune." cnn.com (See also North Korea, Hypocrisy)|
|2018.07.23||Donald Trump is considering stripping a half-dozen former national security officials of their security clearances, an unprecedented use of presidential authority to punish political rivals. cnn.com (See also Unprecedented Actions, Unpresidential Behavior)|
|2018.08.13||The FBI fired agent Peter Strzok, a 21-year veteran of the law enforcement agency who has come under fire for texts he sent that were critical of Donald Trump, despite the fact an independent review by career FBI officials recommended Strzok be suspended for 60 days and demoted. mic.com (See also Russian Meddling in Election, Trump Relationship with Russia, Department of Justice)|
|2018.08.15||The White House is revoking the security clearance of John Brennan, a former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, and mulling pulling them for several other former intelligence chiefs and other officials. abcnews.go.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Trump Relationship with Russia)|
|2018.08.16||Donald Trump's military parade this fall is shaping up to cost $80 million more than initially estimated. cnbc.com (See also Nationalism, Department of Defense, False Statements)|
|2018.08.17||In a remarkable rebuke to Donald Trump, 13 former U.S. intelligence chiefs have signed a harshly worded letter in support of former CIA Director John Brennan after Trump abruptly revoked his security clearance. latimes.com (See also Assaults on Government, Unprecedented Actions)|
|2018.08.28||Donald Trump warned evangelical leaders that Democrats “will overturn everything that we’ve done and they’ll do it quickly and violently” if Republicans lose control of Congress in the midterm elections. nytimes.com (See also False Statements)|
|2018.08.29||A growing number of people whose official birth records show they were born in the United States are now being denied passports — their citizenship suddenly thrown into question, as the Trump administration is accusing hundreds, and possibly thousands, of Hispanics along the border of using fraudulent birth certificates since they were babies, and it is undertaking a widespread crackdown. washingtonpost.com (See also Racism, Immigration)|
|2018.08.30||Donald Trump’s assertions — all on Twitter, some false, some without clear evidence — are bound by one unifying theme: All of his perceived opponents are peddling false facts and only Trump can be trusted. washingtonpost.com (See also False Statements, Assaults on Civil Liberties, Assaults on Facts)|
|2018.09.30||The F.B.I. moved to quickly complete an abbreviated investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct against Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh, even as Democrats demanded more information about the inquiry’s scope, warning that its apparent constraints could make it a “farce.” nytimes.com (See also Supreme Court, Women, False Statements)|
|2018.10.26||Donald Trump doubled down on blaming the media for the nation’s incivility, as suspicious packages sent by a suspected serial bomber continued to target Trump’s outspoken critics. washingtonpost.com (See also Unpresidential Behavior, Assaults on Civil Liberties, Nationalism)|
|2018.11.07||Donald Trump took the exceedingly rare step of suspending the White House credentials of Jim Acosta, the chief White House correspondent for CNN, after an intense verbal clash at a news conference earlier in the day. nytimes.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Unpresidential Behavior, Unprecedented Actions)|
|2018.11.20||Donald Trump told the White House counsel in the spring that he wanted to order the Justice Department to prosecute two of his political adversaries: his 2016 challenger, Hillary Clinton, and the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey. nytimes.com (See also Department of Justice, Legal Issues)|
|2018.11.21||Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. defended the independence and integrity of the federal judiciary, rebuking Donald Trump for calling a judge who had ruled against his administration’s asylum policy “an Obama judge, saying that was a profound misunderstanding of the judicial role. nytimes.com (See also Supreme Court)|
“We do not have Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges,” he said in a statement. “What we have is an extraordinary group of dedicated judges doing their level best to do equal right to those appearing before them. That independent judiciary is something we should all be thankful for.”
|2018.11.27||As the outrage toward the Trump administration’s harsh border policies escalated this week, Sinclair Broadcast Group required their roughly 200 local news outlets to air a defense of the Border Patrol’s use of tear gas against migrants crossing the border. mediaite.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties, Immigration)|
|2018.11.30||In a new move, the federal government has issued new guidance for the political activity of federal government workers, warning that weighing in on impeachment or talking about “the Resistance” may constitute prohibited activity. washingtonpost.com (See also Assaults on Civil Liberties)|
|2018.12.11||Donald Trump continues to reject the judgments of U.S. spy agencies on major foreign policy fronts, creating a dynamic in which intelligence analysts frequently see troubling gaps between the president’s public statements and the facts laid out for him in daily briefings on world events. washingtonpost.com (See also Assaults on Facts, Assaults on Government, Russia, China, North Korea)|
The pattern has become a source of mounting concern to senior U.S. intelligence officials who had hoped that Trump, as he settled into office, would become less hostile to their work and more receptive to the information that spy agencies spend billions of dollars and sometimes put lives at risk gathering, yet presidential distrust extends beyond Russia to assessments on North Korea, Iran, climate change and the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.
|2018.12.21||Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria was made hastily, without consulting his national security team or allies, and over strong objections from virtually everyone involved in the fight against the Islamic State group, agreeing to a withdrawal in a phone call with the Turkish President. apnews.com (See also Unpresidential Behavior, Syria, Foreign Policy, Department of State, Mike Pompeo)|
George Prochnik–The New Yorker
In his Feb. 6, 2017, article, Prochnik examines Stefan Zweig's thoughts on the rise of Fascism in Germany and wonders:
how far along the scale of moral degeneration Zweig would judge America to be in its current state. We have a magnetic leader, one who lies continually and remorselessly—not pathologically but strategically, to placate his opponents, to inflame the furies of his core constituency, and to foment chaos. The American people are confused and benumbed by a flood of fake news and misinformation. Reading in Zweig’s memoir how, during the years of Hitler’s rise to power, many well-meaning people “could not or did not wish to perceive that a new technique of conscious cynical amorality was at work,” it’s difficult not to think of our own present predicament. Last week, as Trump signed a drastic immigration ban that led to an outcry across the country and the world, then sought to mitigate those protests by small palliative measures and denials, I thought of one other crucial technique that Zweig identified in Hitler and his ministers: they introduced their most extreme measures gradually—strategically—in order to gauge how each new outrage was received. “Only a single pill at a time and then a moment of waiting to observe the effect of its strength, to see whether the world conscience would still digest the dose,” Zweig wrote. “The doses became progressively stronger until all Europe finally perished from them.”