Video exposes Trump as a ‘cross between a mob boss and cult leader’: analysis
Official Whte House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian.

"Incredibly important" video documents Donald Trump shaking down a Republican candidate, according to an analysis that aired on CNN on Wednesday.

CNN's John Berman reported on tape showing Trump on the phone with venture capitalist Blake Masters, who is challenging Sen. Mark Kelly (D).

"Let's go to Arizona," CNN's John Berman said. "Blake Masters, the Trump-endorsed candidate for senate — I guess Fox was doing a documentary, shooting a documentary, and they captured footage of Donald Trump calling Blake Masters and telling Masters that he's got to lean more into false claims of election fraud."

Berman played a clip from the video with Trump comparing Masters unfavorably with Kari Lake, who has made the spread of conspiracy theories a central focus of her campaign for governor of Arizona.

Trump said, "Look at Kari ... if they say, ‘How is your family?’ she says, ‘the election was rigged and stolen.’”

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For analysis, Berman interviewed CNN senior political analyst John Avlon.

"John, that's a pretty crazy moment," Berman said.

"It's insane," Avlon replied.

"It's incredibly important to hear it in real terms," he explained. "This is the shakedown. This is the intimidation game that Donald Trump is playing with candidates. If you do not lie for me, if you do not echo my lies, you will be seen as weak and you will not turn out the base. It's the appeal of a cross between mob boss and a cult leader."

"And the fact he fell in line speaks enormously to the politics right now driving the far right," Avlon concluded.

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