The Democrat congressional opponent of Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) faced extreme criticism for suggesting Donald Trump supporters need “re-education camps.”

Paula Collins, who is running unopposed in the June 25 Democrat primary for New York’s 21st Congressional District, also said “we’ve gone through this MAGA nightmare.”

“Even if we were to have a resounding blue wave come through, as many of us would like, putting it all back together again after we’ve gone through this MAGA nightmare and re-educating basically, which, that sounds like a rather, a re-education camp. I don’t think we really want call it that,” Collins said, according to Fox News.

“I’m sure we can find another way to phrase it,” she added.

Collins made the comments during a public Zoom Townhall.

Per Fox News:

In an email to Fox News Digital, Collins explained her comments.

“We currently have lawmakers, including Rep. Elise Stefanik, who mis-quote or mis-understand the law,” Collins told Fox News Digital. “Even if MAGA were to be resoundingly defeated, we would need to engage in widespread civics education, which both red and blue voters acknowledge has been slipping in recent years.”

Collins said “the goal would be such that regular citizens could understand the process by which the state courts process matters, compared to the federal court circuit, and so forth.”

“Rep. Elise Stefanik does not show a good understanding of the court structure in her home state of New York,” Collins continued.

Collins pointed to Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s case against former President Trump, in which he was found guilty on all counts of falsifying business records. Collins said that trial and the charges are “a state matter, not a federal matter.”

Stefanik released a statement “calling on Joe Biden, Hakeem Jeffries, and Chuck Schumer to immediately condemn NY Democrat congressional candidate’s call to force Trump voters into re-education camps.”


From the New York Post:

The remark was reminiscent of failed 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s argument that “cult members” who support Trump need to undergo “formal deprogramming.”

“So many of those extremists, those MAGA extremists, take their marching orders from Donald Trump who has no credibility left by any measure,” Clinton said during an October 2023 appearance on CNN, referring to the 77-year-old former president’s Make America Great Again slogan.

“And when do they break with him? You know, because at some point, you know, maybe there needs to be a formal deprogramming of the cult members, but something needs to happen,” she added.

Alex DeGrasse, a senior advisor to Stefanik, slammed Collins over the remark and noted that the Democratic candidate was not a resident of New York’s 21st Congressional District until she launched her campaign.

Join The Conversation. Leave a Comment.

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.