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Trumpism Is The Loyal Child of McCarthyism

Wisconsin Historical Society
1954 Army-McCarthy hearings. Left to right: G. David Schine, Senator Joe McCarthy, and Roy Cohn

The GOP continues to embrace Donald Trump's "Big Lie," that he won the 2020 election, Republican state legislatures are trying to pass voter suppression laws, the House stripped Rep. Liz Cheney from her post for calling out Trump's lie, and a majority of Republican voters believe Trump won the 2020 election. 

The parallels many writers see between President Trump and Senator Joe McCarthy are not coincidental. President Trump's former attorney Roy Cohn taught him everything he learned from McCarthy's playbook when the served as McCarthy's chief council during his second term as a Wisconsin senator.  

Past is prologue. We reair our August 2020 show on McCarthyism. 


  • Larry Tye is the author of eight books. His latest is Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator Joe McCarthy. He’s also a Nieman fellow at Harvard and a former award-winning reporter for The Boston Globe. His next book will be, The Jazzmen: How Duke Ellington, Satchmo Armstrong and Count Basie Transformed America.

Join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter. 

Colin McEnroe and Cat Pastor contributed to this show. 

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