Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the odds-on favorite to become the Democratic National Committee's chairman, had a long association with the anti-Semitic Nation of Islam. He compared then-President George W. Bush and 9/11 to Adolf Hitler and the destruction of the Reichstag, the German parliament building: "9/11 is the juggernaut in American history and it allows ... it's almost like, you know, the Reichstag fire," Ellison said. "After the Reichstag was burned, they blamed the Communists for it, and it put the leader of that country (Hitler) in a position where he could basically have authority to do whatever he wanted."
Comparing Republicans to Nazis has long been a national pastime of the Democratic Party.
During the1964 Goldwater/Johnson presidential race, Republican presidential candidate Barry Goldwater accepted an invitation to visit an American military installation located in Bavaria, Germany. On "CBS Evening News," hosted by Walter Cronkite, correspondent Daniel Schorr said: "It is now clear that Sen. Goldwater's interview with Der Spiegel, with its hard line appealing to right-wing elements in Germany, was only the start of a move to link up with his opposite numbers in Germany." The reaction shot — when the cameras returned to Cronkite — showed the "most trusted man in America" gravely shaking his head. When Goldwater accepted the Republican nomination, Democratic California Gov. Pat Brown said, "The stench of fascism is in the air."
About Ronald Reagan, Steven F. Hayward, author of "The Age Of Reagan" wrote: "Liberals hated Reagan in the 1980s. Pure and simple. They used language that would make the most fervid anti-Obama rhetoric of the Tea Party seem like, well, a tea party. Democratic Rep. William Clay of Missouri charged that Reagan was 'trying to replace the Bill of Rights with fascist precepts lifted verbatim from Mein Kampf.'"
After Republicans took control of the House in the mid-'90s, Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich., compared the newly conservative-controlled House to "the Duma and the Reichstag," referring to the legislature set up by Czar Nicholas II of Russia and the parliament of the German Weimar Republic that brought Hitler to power.
About President George W. Bush, billionaire Democratic contributor George Soros said, "(He displays the) supremacist ideology of Nazi Germany," and that his administration used rhetoric that echoes his childhood in occupied Hungary. "When I hear Bush say, 'You're either with us or against us,'" Soros said, "it reminds me of the Germans." He also said: "The (George W.) Bush administration and the Nazi and communist regimes all engaged in the politics of fear. ... Indeed, the Bush administration has been able to improve on the techniques used by the Nazi and communist propaganda machines."
Former Vice President Al Gore said: "(George W. Bush's) executive branch has made it a practice to try and control and intimidate news organizations, from PBS to CBS to Newsweek. ... And every day, they unleash squadrons of digital brown shirts to harass and hector any journalist who is critical of the President."
Actor/singer and activist Harry Belafonte, who marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., called Bush a racist. When asked whether the number and prominence of blacks in the Bush administration perhaps suggested a lack of racism, Belafonte said, "Hitler had a lot of Jews high up in the hierarchy of the Third Reich."
NAACP Chairman Julian Bond played the Nazi card several times. Speaking at historically black Fayetteville State University in North Carolina in 2006, Bond said, "The Republican Party would have the American flag and the swastika flying side by side."
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who dared to rein in excessive public employee compensation packages, received the full Nazi treatment. The hard-left blog Libcom.org posted in 2011: "Scott Walker is a fascist, perhaps not in the classical sense since he doesn't operate in the streets, but a fascist nonetheless. ... He is a fascist, for his program takes immediate and direct aim at (a sector of) the working class."
After the 2012 Republican National Convention, California Democratic Party Chairman John Burton said, "(Republicans) lie, and they don't care if people think they lie. As long as you lie, (Nazi propaganda minister) Joseph Goebbels — the big lie — you keep repeating it."
The chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party, Dick Harpootlian, in 2012, compared the state's Republican governor to Hitler's mistress. When told that the Republicans were holding a competing press conference at a NASCAR Hall of Fame basement studio, Harpootlian told the South Carolina delegation: "(Gov. Nikki Haley) was down in the bunker, a la Eva Braun."
If not the Nazi card, it's the race card or the sexist card or the homophobic card. This "I'm right; you're evil" brand of politics has a lot to do with why voters elected Donald Trump, rather than Hillary "basket of deplorables" Clinton, to serve as our next president.
Larry Elder is a best-selling author and nationally syndicated radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com. Follow Larry on Twitter @larryelder. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.