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Former President Donald Trump suggested that US democracy isn’t fair and is in tatters following his 2020 election loss and flurry of indictments.
“This democracy — I don’t consider us to have much of a democracy right now,” Trump told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday.
When asked if democracy “is the most effective form of government,” Trump replied, “I do. I do. But it has to be a democracy that’s fair.”
Trump, 77, who is facing two indictments stemming from alleged efforts to undercut democracy during the 2020 election aftermath, dusted off a list of grievances about the state of US democracy.
Those gripes ranged from the onslaught of 91 criminal counts pending against him to some of the brutal media coverage he’s weathered.
“People understand what’s going on,” Trump contended. “We need a media that’s free and fair. And frankly, if they don’t have that, it’s very, very hard to straighten out our country.”
Polls have indicated that Trump is not alone in thinking that US democracy is wilting away.
Roughly 1 in 10 American adults gave the sate of US democracy high marks in an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll conducted over the summer.
Across the board, polls have shown sinking public faith in Congress, the president, the Supreme Court, and core institutions more broadly.
Critics such as President Biden and Republican foes like former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wy.) have accused Trump of undermining US democracy by peddling false claims about the 2020 election being “stolen” or “rigged.”
Trump has also weathered criticisms of being overly cozy with dictators whom he’s lavished praise upon such as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Russian leader Vladimir Putin.
At one point, the NBC interview, Trump commended Putin’s recent remarks musing that Trump could help resolve the Ukraine war.
“I love that he said that because that means what I’m saying is right,” Trump quipped, arguing that he could usher in an end to the war expeditiously.
Moderator Kristen Welker then rattled off some of the atrocities in the bloody war being waged by the Kremlin half a world away such as abductions, mass graves, and more.
“All terrible,” Trump replied. “I had a very good relationship with him and yet nobody was tougher on Russia than me.”
Trump further argued that “the war would have never happened” under his watch because he was able to “get along with Putin” and achieve peace through strength.
His sit-down interview drew flack from the campaign of his chief rival, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who highlighted Trump’s musing about cutting a deal with Democrats on abortion.
“We’ve already seen the disastrous results of Donald Trump compromising with Democrats: over $7 trillion in new debt, an unfinished border wall, and the jailbreak First Step Act letting violent criminals back on to the streets,” DeSantis campaign spokesman Andrew Romeo wrote on social media.
“Republicans across the country know that Ron DeSantis will never back down.”
Welker’s interview with Trump came on her first day of anchoring “Meet the Press” as the marquee show’s new host.
Her predecessor Chuck Todd hosted his last show on Sept. 10. With Welker taking the reins at NBC, every major Sunday morning political news show is now either hosted or co-hosted by a female anchor.