Representative Mo Brooks, a Republican from Alabama, brought Adolf Hitler’s own words to the floor of the U.S. Congress on Monday, quoting at length from Hitler’s autobiography, “Mein Kampf.”
In a speech in which he said that “socialists and the fake news media” should “cleanse their souls and atone for their sins” for endorsing the investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, Brooks argued that the Russia investigation was an example of “big lie propaganda.”
“In that vein, I quote from another socialist who mastered big lie propaganda to a maximum and deadly effect,” Brooks said, before proceeding to read from “Mein Kampf” for nearly a full minute.
Though Brooks seems to have intended to argue that critics of Trump were using Nazi propaganda tactics to attack President Trump, he in fact misread Hitler. In “Mein Kampf,” “the big lie” is the Jews’ claim that the German military, and not the Jews themselves, were to blame for Germany’s defeat in the first World War.
“Mo Brooks didn’t compare the Dems and the media today to Hitler, despite all your rationalizing headlines,” Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg wrote on Twitter. “He is taking Hitler’s POV and compared them to the Jews.”
In a tweet, the ADL demanded that Brooks apologize for comparing Democrats to Nazis.
Josh Nathan-Kazis is a staff writer for the Forward. He covers charities and politics, and writes investigations and longform.
Hitler’s Mein Kampf Read On House Floor By Congressman