Gov. Larry Hogan said Sunday that President Biden equating Republican policies with fascism was “divisive” and inappropriate — even if, the Maryland Republican said, there is a streak of authoritarianism within the GOP.
Mr. Hogan is one of former President Donald Trump’s harshest critics and has signaled he may mount a bid for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.
“It’s that kind of divisive rhetoric on both sides that’s really bad for America. I’ve been talking about the toxic politics and if Republicans are calling Democrats socialists and communists and we have the president of the United States calling Republicans fascist, I don’t think it adds to the overall discussion,” he said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
Asked whether he saw any strains of authoritarianism in the Republican Party, Mr. Hogan responded: “There’s no question we see some signs of that. And I’m one of the ones speaking out.”
Mr. Biden last week described Republicans and Mr. Trump’s “Make America Great Again” political agenda as “semi-fascism,” sparking fierce backlash from GOP figures who argue that it’s inappropriate to condemn half the country’s voters for their political views.
Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison refused to denounce the language Sunday and the White House has since doubled down.
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“When you look at the definition of fascism and you think about what [Republicans] are doing in attacking our democracy, what they’re doing in taking away our freedoms, wanting to take away our rights, that is what that is,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Friday.