On MSNBC, Steve Schmidt Condemns Chants Of "Lock Her Up" During RNC Speeches
Schmidt: "It Seems A Little Banana Republican To Me ... We Don't Lock Up Our Political Opponents, The Rule Of Law Matters"
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From the July 19 edition of MSNBC's The Place for Politics:
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BRIAN WILLIAMS (CO-HOST): Steve, backing up one speaker to Chris Christie who we didn't have time to discuss, your view, your grade of the prosecution of the case against Hillary Clinton? Also, the reaction of the crowd, this chant has become part of this gathering, lock her up, about the former first lady and Secretary of State.
STEVE SCHMIDT: Let me separate the two. First, it was a partisan political speech delivered by Chris Christie, who is a world class political communicator. I think it was by far the most effective political speech going at Hillary Clinton for this convention, though, I agree they are still lacking enough speeches, enough speakers talking about Donald Trump in the way that we just heard Tiffany Trump do.
I do think the "lock her up" chant, as it's received at home, to that 32 percent of the electorate who will decide the outcome -- It seems a little banana republican to me. It's something that you're not use to hearing in this country. We don't lock up our political opponents. The rule of law matters, and it matters to Republicans, and Republicans emphasize the importance of the rule of law.
We've just had an investigation of Hillary Clinton, the FBI director made his recommendations to the Department of Justice, said she has been dishonest, she's not been truthful to the American people, but there was no cause for prosecution on that. And so I think that the chant "Lock her up" does not translate particularly well.
And the analogue too, I think, you go back to that 1992 convention speech by Pat Buchanan. In the hall, very popular, well received, but at home, not so much. And so, I think that chant is not helping the cause.