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Rep. Raskin Likens Political Climate To Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’

Raskin draws parallels between current tumultuous landscape and Shakespearean play, emphasizing role of technology.

Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) on Sunday likened the current political climate to Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.”

Chairman James Comer, R-Ky., right, and ranking member Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., confer during the House Oversight and Accountability Committee “Hearing with IRS Whistleblowers About the Biden Criminal Investigation,” in Rayburn Building on Wednesday, July 19, 2023. Gary Shapley, IRS supervisory special agent, and Joseph Ziegler, IRS criminal investigator, testified. (TOM WILLIAMS/GETTY IMAGES) 

The story of the “The Tempest” began when Prospero, formerly Duke of Milan, was usurped by his brother Antonio in the aide of Alonso, the King of Milan, which was in the first act.

The second act was about Prospero was determined to take back his dukedom. He uses his magic to separate the shipwreck survivors into groups.

Raskin, in an interview on MSNBC’s ‘Inside with Jen Psaki,’ drew parallels between the tumultuous political landscape and a passage from The Tempest.

Aware of Raskin’s fondness for Shakespearean literature, Psaki inquired if there was any particular play that he found relevant to the present times.

“Well, there’s a passage in The Tempest: ‘Hell is empty and all the devils are here.’ I thought about that a number of times,” Raskin said, according to Washington Examiner.

Raskin used “The Tempest” used this parallel to draw the contrast of former President Donald Trump to regain the presidency after losing the 2020 election. The former president maintained his following ever since his defeat of the election.

A portrait of William Shakespeare by artist Robert Peake, which is believed to be the only signed and dated image of the playwright created during his lifetime, on display at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London, before it is offered for sale by private treaty for a figure in excess of £10m. Picture date: Wednesday November 16, 2022. (KIRSTY O’CONNOR/GETTY IMAGES) 

Raskin further elaborated on the role of technology in shaping the current political scenario, emphasizing its potential use by both democrats and his political opponents.

“Every generation has to decide how to choose. Will the 21st century be essentially of democracy and freedom and use of all extraordinary technologies to expand human happiness and prosperity, or is it going to be the use of the technologies by bullies and autocrats and tyrants to oppress people?” said Raskin.

“You can see it going and either direction.”

Meanwhile, Meanwhile, Raskin, in another show, called Jan. 6 events “a very carefully orchestrated and choreographed plot to overthrow the election” by Donald Trump. 

“Trump and his followers would invite us to believe that all of this was some kind of spontaneous eruption at a rally that just got a little bit out of control,” said Raskin on The Katie Phang Show.

Produced in association with Benzinga

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