George Soros Says Trump Is a Conman Who Will Do 'Anything' to Stay in Power

Progressive Hungarian-American billionaire George Soros has warned that President Donald Trump will do "anything" to stay in power and avoid being held accountable, in an interview marking his 90th birthday.

Soros—long a bogeyman for the global right-wing and a lightning rod for anti-Semitic conspiracy theories due to his funding for progressive causes and Democratic politics—told Italy's La Repubblica in an interview published Wednesday that Trump remains dangerous—even though the president is trailing challenger Joe Biden in national polls.

Soros lauded the American democratic system and Constitution, which he said remain robust despite political polarization, economic crisis and social unrest. "The United States is one of the longest-lasting democracies in history," he told La Repubblica.

"But even in the United States, a confidence trickster like Trump can be elected president and undermine democracy from within."

"But in the U.S. you have a great tradition of checks and balances and established rules," Soros said. "And above all you have the Constitution. So I am confident that Trump will turn out to be a transitory phenomenon, hopefully ending in November."

Despite that confidence, Soros said Trump "remains very dangerous, he's fighting for his life and he will do anything to stay in power, because he has violated the Constitution in many different ways and if he loses the presidency he will be held accountable."

Multiple polls have put Biden ahead of Trump in national polls and in the swing states that will decide the November election. The president has dismissed the polls as "fake news" and expressed confidence that he will win a second term in the White House.

But Trump has also falsely claimed that mail-in ballots might make the result void and hinted he may not accept the result of the election if he loses. Last month, he even suggested postponing the election due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, prompting outrage even among conservatives.

The president has maintained his polarizing strategy and divisive rhetoric in the run-up to the vote, seemingly hoping that motivating his base will help him defeat Biden, who he claims is unfit to be president.

Trump is also framing Biden as a Trojan Horse for radical leftists within the Democratic party, though more progressive Democrats have repeatedly criticized Biden for his centrist politics and failure to woo the left of the party and younger voters.

Trump supporters have consistently propagated conspiracy theories about Soros, accusing him—with unmistakable anti-Semitic tropes—of being part of a globalist elite bent on suppressing American voters for his own financial gain.

Donald Trump Jr. has even shared a theory accusing Soros—a Jew who posed as a Christian to survive Nazi-occupied Hungary during World War Two—of being Nazi himself.

Trump has also alluded to Soros' influence on U.S. politics, accusing him—without evidence—of funding caravans of Central American migrants heading to the southern American border ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

Soros is a regular feature of extremist conspiracy theories shared online by die-hard Trump supporters. This prominence has made him a target, and in 2018 he was one of the prominent figures who were targeted with pipe bombs sent by Trump supporter Cesar Sayoc, since sentenced to 20 years in jail for his campaign.

In the interview, Soros also said that the COVID-19 pandemic is "the worst crisis in my lifetime since the Second World War." He said people are "disoriented and scared," leading them to "do things that are bad for them and for the world."

Soros also warned that the pandemic could be harmful to democratic societies "because the instruments of surveillance produced by artificial intelligence are very useful in bringing the virus under control and that makes those instruments more acceptable even in open societies."

While the world grapples with COVID-19 and the economic fallout, the U.S. has also been rocked by anti-racism protests sparked by the killing of Black man George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers in May. The unrest has led to violent confrontations between police and protesters in major cities across the country.

Trump has been criticized for his refusal to acknowledge demonstrators' grievances, and his use of unidentified federal agents to harass, assault and detain protesters.

The president was also condemned after heavily armed riot police attacked peaceful protesters close to the White House in Washington, D.C., clearing a path for a presidential photo opportunity outside a vandalized church.

Soros, who last month donated $220 million to causes advocating for racial equality Black causes, said the Black Lives Matter movement "really matters."

"This is the first time that a large majority of the population, other than Black people, recognizes that there is systemic discrimination against Blacks that can be traced back to slavery," he explained.

George Soros, Donald Trump, 2020 election, conman
Hungarian-American U.S. investor and philanthropist George Soros delivers a speech on the sideline of the World Economic Forum annual meeting, on January 23, 2020 in Davos, Switzerland. FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images/Getty