Author Tim O'Brien, who wrote the book Trump Nation, explained the likely sources of President Donald Trump's "racist" closing message in the midterm elections during a Tuesday appearance on MSNBC's "Deadline: White House" with Nicolle Wallace.
"Donald Trump doesn't read books," O'Brien reminded.
"I think this comes from two places. One is he's got Steve Bannon on his shoulder whispering in his ear and Breitbart and Steve Bannon have been longtime tribunes for white nationalism," he suggested.
"And Trump has never hesitated to separate himself from those," he explained. "Remember, he was questioned probably three years ago about David Duke and whether or not he would disavow Duke and the KKK and sort of backed away from that."
"The other thing to remember is he has a long history of race-baiting," he reminded.
"I think now he's going into the midterms, he understands that the base that got him elected in 2016 is still the base he needs now and that is predominantly white, predominantly male and non-college educated and he's doing racist dog whistles to appeal to them," he concluded.
Associated Press White House reporter Jonathan Lemire agreed.
"It's not a coincidence this comes as he doubles down on the hard-line immigration rhetoric," he noted.
Former Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD) thought Trump's rhetoric reminded her of the fatal "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville.
"The President of the United States, the only thing that was missing from that speech in Houston last night was the tiki torches and khakis because the President of the United States understands what he believes he needs to turn out his base, he's using that," she explained.
"It's xenophobic, it's racist," she added.