'DOWNRIGHT SCARY AND DISTURBING' James Clapper blasts Trump's campaign rally in Arizona

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james clapper cnn

CNN

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper blasted President Donald Trump's performance during a campaign rally in Arizona on Tuesday, calling it "downright scary and disturbing."

"It's hard to know where to start," Clapper said to CNN anchor Don Lemon. "It's just so objectionable on so many levels."

"You know, I've toiled in one capacity or another for every president since and including John F. Kennedy through President Obama, and I don't know when I've listened and watched something like this from a president that I've found more disturbing," Clapper continued.

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On Tuesday evening, Trump held a campaign rally amid a cheering crowd and discussed many controversial topics, including the Charlottesville protests, North Korea, and the US-Mexico border wall.

"I find this downright scary and disturbing," Clapper said. "This is not a surprise, it's interesting to contrast last night's teleprompter Trump performance versus tonight, which is of course, the real Trump, just as it was at the unglued impromptu press conference at Trump tower. 

"So I just find this extremely disturbing."

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Clapper also said that he questioned Trump's fitness for president: "I really question his ... fitness to be in this office. And I also am beginning to wonder about his motivation for it. Maybe he is looking for a way out.

"He should of quit while he was ahead last night," Clapper continued, as he referred to Trump's measured speech on his strategy for Afghanistan on Monday. "But again, I think the real Trump came through."

But Clapper wasn't finished with his critical assessment of Trump: "This behavior and this divisiveness, and the complete intellectual, moral, and ethical void that the president of the United States exhibits, and how much longer does the country have to, to borrow a phrase, 'endure this nightmare?'"

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