The anti-Trump group The Lincoln Project on Wednesday launched an ad seizing on former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s apparent suggestion that a Myanmar-like coup take place in the U.S., arguing that the Republican Party has “crossed a line.”
The one-minute ad, set to run digitally in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday and in the Bedminster, N.J., and New York City media markets Thursday, includes audio from a Dallas conference in which an audience member asked Flynn, “I want to know why what happened in Myanmar can’t happen here?”
Flynn responded, “No reason. I mean, it should happen here.”
The comparison to the military-led coup in Myanmar, which has been followed by a months-long brutal security force crackdown resulting in the deaths of hundreds of people, led to bipartisan outrage against the former Trump administration official.
The Lincoln Project ad following the remarks from Flynn includes footage from the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, with a narrator saying, “America has crossed a line.”
“The Republican Party believes in ending the American experiment, led by a man obsessed with power and money who will say and do anything to seize control again,” the ad continues, along with footage of former President TrumpDonald TrumpJack Ciattarelli wins GOP primary in New Jersey governor’s race House Judiciary Democrats call on DOJ to reverse decision on Trump defense Democratic super PAC targets Youngkin over voting rights MORE, before playing a clip of the ex-commander-in-chief at the February Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) repeating his unsupported claim that the 2020 presidential election “was rigged.”
The ad’s narrator says that Trump is willing “to punish those who oppose him,” as the ad shows footage of law enforcement officials clearing out racial justice protesters outside of the White House last year before Trump crossed Lafayette Square and posed for a photo-op outside of St. John’s Episcopal Church.
“His followers don’t just disagree with us, they’ve got something worse in mind,” the narrator says. “We know what national populism and authoritarianism lead to every time,” the ad continues, along with footage of Trump supporters storming the Capitol earlier this year as lawmakers met to certify President BidenJoe BidenHouse Judiciary Democrats call on DOJ to reverse decision on Trump defense Democratic super PAC targets Youngkin over voting rights Harris dubs first foreign trip a success amid criticism over border MORE’s 2020 election win.
“That’s why we will never compromise with this evil. We will never step back from the line, because we believe in America,” the ad says, before asking the audience, “Are you in this fight, or have they already won?”
In a Wednesday press release unveiling the ad, former Republican Party member and Lincoln Project co-founder Rick Wilson said in a statement that the GOP has “embraced a style of politics that favors power over people; fear over freedom; destruction over democracy.”
“The GOP believes in sacrificing our democratic systems at the altar of national populism and authoritarianism,” Wilson added. “This newest indication that a line has been crossed is but another reason The Lincoln Project remains committed to the fight ahead and committed to seeing an end to Trumpism.”
Flynn has denied suggesting that a Myanmar-style coup “should happen” in the U.S., writing in a Telegram post, “There is NO reason whatsoever for any coup in America, and I do not and have not at any time called for any action of that sort.”
“Any reporting of any other belief by me is a boldface fabrication based on twisted reporting at a lively panel at a conference of Patriotic Americans who love this country, just as I do,” he added at the time.
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