In far-right circles of Congress and media, there's a growing characterization that Democrats and anyone perceived as loyal to them are not only un-American, but enemies to America as well.
Right-wing representatives like Madison Cawthorn of North Carolina have told constituents there is a "spiritual battle" against Democrats, who he claims want to make the country "genderless, sexless, and Godless." His colleagues, Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, have accused Democratic Congresswoman Ilhan Omar of Minnesota—one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress—a terrorist sympathizer.
But this rhetoric isn't just present among members of Congress. They've targeted lower positions and private citizens as well. Far-right Senate candidate J.D. Vance of Ohio described professors as "the enemy." Northampton County executive candidate Steve Lynch called for "20 strong men" to help him force the removal of school board members.
What's more, the rhetoric is working. A YouGov poll conducted earlier this year found that more than half of Republicans saw the other party not as political opponents, but as enemies—more than 30 points higher than Democrats who were asked the same question.
Far-right Congressman Jim Jordan of Ohio once again promoted this extremist rhetoric, comparing the fight against Democrats to the fight against slavery and Nazis.
“Every third generation in this country has had to do something big. You think about the Founders and what they did when they declared why we’re going to be an independent country, what they had to overcome, the greatest military in the world. They did it. Three generations later, Lincoln and the Americans then held the country together, got rid of the evil of slavery. Three generations later, America defeated imperial Japan and Nazi Germany, the evils that those two countries represented and the greatest generation won that war.”
He then concluded:
"Now, here we are three generations later and the assault is from the radical left. We have to step forward and do our part like previous generations of Americans have done."
Interestingly enough, Jordan made these comments to Sebastian Gorka, a host on the far-right disinformation outlet Newsmax. Gorka himself has been credibly accused of ties to Hungarian neo-Nazi groups.
Given that Jordan voted against the certification of electoral votes in swing states Trump lost and frequently promoted delusions of widespread election fraud, people accused the Congressman of projecting when talking about enemies to America.
It's no mistake that the three comparisons Jordan made to fighting the "assault" from the radical left are some of America's most famous wars.
Some believe the extreme rhetoric will only lead to more right-wing violence.
But the GOP shows no signs of backtracking.