Dem lawmaker to Trump: 'How dare you lecture us about treason'

Rep. Hakeem JeffriesHakeem Sekou JeffriesTop Judiciary Republican sees potential for bipartisan agreement on cyber issues Black Caucus sees power grow with new Democratic majority New Dem caucus chairman: Some wall is good, but not new wall MORE (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday tore into President TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Shutdown negotiations continue after White House immigration proposal Rove warns Senate GOP: Don't put only focus on base Ann Coulter blasts Trump shutdown compromise: ‘We voted for Trump and got Jeb!’ MORE after he accused Democrats on Monday of "treasonous" behavior during his State of the Union address.

Jeffries said Tuesday that treason is "not a laughing matter" but rather a "serious crime embedded in the Constitution, punishable by death."

"But since your commander in chief chose to raise it at a political rally, let's have a discussion about treason," he said.

"Is it treason for a presidential campaign to meet with a hostile foreign power to sell out our democracy and rig the election?"

Jeffries further questioned whether it was treason for a presidential campaign to "meet with Russian spies who promise information that was negative about a political opponent and then fail to report that meeting to law enforcement officials."

He appeared to be referring to a 2016 Trump Tower meeting that included Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpConservatives pound BuzzFeed, media over Cohen report BuzzFeed story has more to say about media than the president Special counsel issues rare statement disputing explosive Cohen report MORE, White House adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerTrump pitches new plan to reopen government amid Dem pushback Trump expected to pitch immigration deal to end funding stalemate The Memo: Concern over shutdown grows in Trump World MORE, former Trump campaign chairman Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortBuzzFeed story has more to say about media than the president Dems revive impeachment talk after latest Cohen bombshell The case for Russia sanctions MORE and a Russian attorney.

"How dare you lecture us about treason. This is not a dictatorship. It's a democracy," Jeffries said.

"And we do not have to stand for a reality show host masquerading as president of the United States."

In a speech Monday, Trump suggested that Democrats not clapping for his address were guilty of treason.

"They were like death and un-American. Un-American. Somebody said, 'treasonous,'" Trump said Monday.
 
"I mean, yeah, I guess, why not? Can we call that treason? Why not? I mean they certainly didn't seem to love our country very much."

Trump added the Democrats "would rather see Trump do badly than our country do well," saying that was "very selfish."