MSNBC Contributor: Trump Could Be Heading Toward ‘Workplace Violence’ Incident

• April 8, 2019 8:20 pm


MSNBC national security contributor Frank Figliuzzi theorized Monday that President Donald Trump dismissing White House officials could be evidence of a culture of "workplace violence."

Deadline: White House host Nicolle Wallace gave credence to Figliuzzi’s theory about Trump’s behavior, and Figliuzzi was happy to expound upon his theory. He said all the signs of a "flashpoint" are evident in Trump’s behavior amid the ouster of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and other officials.

Figliuzzi posited a "possible analogy between what we're seeing in the president and studies of violence and acting out, particularly workplace violence." Trump’s negative attitude showed signs of a "pathway to violence," he asserted.

"When people say to him, ‘The law or policy is such and such and we would be violating the Constitution or the law,’ and he simply dismisses it and fires people and keeps doing it, are we essentially watching a workplace violence incident play out at the highest level of our government?" he asked.

Figliuzzi wasn’t totally sure whether he was right or what the consequences would be.

"Is he acting out now and where does this go if I'm right about that?" he asked.

Wallace said the "flashpoint" that’s coming is the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report, despite the fact that the report found no evidence of conspiracy as Wallace long suspected. According to Attorney General William Barr, Mueller did not make a judgment about Trump’s possible obstruction of justice, but Barr was confident no such charge had merit.

Figliuzzi marshalled as evidence Trump’s managerial behavior and "attachment" to the issue of immigration.

"When we see people using language of despondency, lashing out, blaming others, obsessive compulsive attachment to one issue and the inability to get off it—in that case it would be the border, security on the border and immigration—the question we have to ask ourselves from a behavioral sense is: Are we watching a president essentially on his way to what we call a flash point, and are we now beginning to see him act out in the form of purging and mass firing and completely not listening to any logic?" he asked.

Previously on Deadline, Fligliuzzi has theorized about this link between Trump’s behavior and the psychology of workplace violence. On March 19, he used "workplace violence" as his lens through which to examine the Trump’s feud with George Conway, husband of White House aide Kellyanne Conway.

"If this were somebody else, what I would be thinking about would be what behavioralists talk about as the pathway to violence," Figliuzzi said. "The language of desperation is something we key in on if someone's headed toward a flashpoint. That phrase, witch hunt, witch hunt, is a form of desperation. ‘I can't do anything about this.’ Where is this going? I'm concerned about where it's going because on a workplace violence level, it would be headed toward violence."