Washington – "I'm convinced it's a fascist": Democratic leader Ilhan Omar responded to Donald Trump on Thursday after a campaign rally by the US president where it was violently targeted by his supporters.
"It's not about me, it's about our fight for what our country really should be", launched the girl from Minnesota (north), daughter of Somali refugees, to which Mr. Trump advised"return"in his country of origin.
The young woman of Muslim faith, whose statements about Israel a few months ago provoked a strong controversy, denounced with force the will of Mr. Trump to silence "democratic debate and differences of opinion".
"Return it! Return it!"chanted Wednesday night in North Carolina hundreds of supporters of the Republican billionaire, galvanized by the latter at a meeting"Make America Great Again".
At 473 days of the election, this meeting in Greenville may have been a turning point.
– Wave of indignation –
Faced with the outcry, the billionaire septuagenarian tried Thursday, without convincing, to distance himself from this sequence that caused a wave of indignation across the United States.
"I did not like it. I do not agree with that", he said, assuring – obviously – that he tried to stop these songs by quickly speaking again.
Standing behind a podium bearing the presidential seal, he has never, at any time, tried to calm the crowd, listening without saying a word this new slogan which echoes, in another register, the famous "Lock it!"chanted in 2016 regarding Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
With ironic points in support, he ginned the names of the four elected minority Democrats whom he attacked with violence for four days. In an electric atmosphere, he multiplied the spades.
If he wants to stay in the White House for four more years, Donald Trump will have to repeat the feat of 2016 when he won three key states: Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin.
After two years and a half chaotic, he could have, as hoped some conservative voices, opt for a form of presidentialization. He made the opposite choice: to blow on the embers of racial tensions to ensure the support of its electoral base, mostly white.
"He needs his 2016 electorate to mobilize, in all voices without exception. He thinks it's the right strategy to electrify them", summarizes Wendy Schiller, who teaches political science at Brown University.
According to her, "the risk is that it mobilizes its electoral base but, in doing so, also strongly mobilizes the democratic electoral base".
– "Vile and cowardly"-
For the time being, Donald Trump is going for it. And hardens every day a little more his rhetoric, repeating at will his new line of attack: "They do not like our country. You know what? If they do not like it, tell them to leave!"
"To vote for a democrat in 2020, whatever it is, is to vote for the rise of radical socialism, the destruction of the American dream and, to put it clearly, the destruction of our country", he concluded Wednesday evening, unusual remarks in the mouth of a US president.
The footage provoked outrage in the Democratic camp.
"It's ignoble. Is loose. It's xenophobic. It's racist. That defiles the presidential function", responded Democratic Senator Kamala Harris, candidate for the succession of Donald Trump.
There remains the question of the attitude of the Republican Party.
The reaction is, for the time being, the same as every polemic with xenophobic accents triggered by the former businessman of New York: some voices rise to express their indignation but the party's tenors are block, minimizing the words or pretending to look elsewhere.
Thursday morning, a moderate elected to the Grand Old Party made his difference: Adam Kinzinger.
"I disagree deeply with the extreme left and I was sickened by their tone", tweeted the young elected from Illinois."But I woke up this morning disgusted: slogans + Send it back!"are disgusting and would make our founding fathers tremble".
Another voice, that of Anthony Scaramucci, ephemeral director of communication of the White House, was heard.
Judging the presidential tweets "racist and unacceptable"he warned him:"The President must understand that if he continues in this direction, a block of voters will break off like an iceberg that breaks and moves away.".