Caitlin Hernandez / Courier Illustration of President Donald J. Trump imposed on an image from the MLK assasination riots alongside a tweet of his from Twitter on Sunday, September 29, 2019. The tweet has fueled some of the alt-right into supporting a civil war and has been the subject of critcism by impeachment supporters.
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President Donald Trump broke from his usual rhetoric of anti-democrat bashing on Twitter last Sunday, to quote one of his supporters who made a dangerously ambiguous suggestion of civil war. Despite the president seemingly endorsing calls for dissension, it’s nothing but a needy, implicit message to a niche population of conservatives.

The president is well-known for his incredibly open and irresponsibly heated use of Twitter to communicate with the U.S. about official matters, but this most recent display is showing a new emotion: Trump is scared. 

“‘If the Democrats are successful in removing the President from office (which they will never be), it will cause a Civil War like fracture in this Nation from which our Country will never heal.’ Pastor Robert Jeffress, @FoxNews,” tweeted Trump, quoting the Fox News Contributor who defended him on the program Fox & Friends.

The tweet went viral because it implied that the president is supportive of civil war when it benefits him. People on both sides of the political aisle chimed in to voice their support and concern. 

But with a new poll that suggests a majority of Americans now support an impeachment inquiry, the idea of civil war isn’t going anywhere fast. 

Of course, Trump didn’t get where he is without his passionate group of alt-right supporters. Social media savvy militia group, Oath Keepers, has already voiced their agreement.

“We ARE on the verge of a HOT civil war,” tweeted the Oath Keepers.

The group later denied calling for a civil war in the latter part of the thread, but this tweet received much less attention from their 24,000 followers. This militia is known actively tweeting about being ready to defend the Constitution at any time. 

Other militia groups have responded to the president’s calls before, so this most recent wave should not be taken lightly. But simply put, Trump doesn’t have enough extremists in his corner to make a lasting impact.

In the most recent Reuters/Ipsos poll, conducted between Sept. 30 and Oct. 1, it was found that only 24 percent of registered voters strongly approved of Trump’s performance as a whole. 74 percent of Democratic registered voters strongly disapproved of Trump, but more significantly is that only 50percent of Republican registered voters strongly approved of him. This signals that the Republican party’s strength isn’t as unified as the Democratic party. 

Even so, how many of that 24 percent would physically join a civil war? 

Clearly, Trump’s numbers easily dwindle after a game of “divide and conquer”. Make no mistake, the president is smarter than he appears: these outlandish comments are intentional. But if he faces impeachment, his attempts to spark a war are easily extinguishable.

Caitlin Hernandez

Caitlin Hernandez is a writer and photographer for the Courier at Pasadena City College. She's a second year journalism major with a passion for culture and great local eats.

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