'Downright scary and disturbing': Clapper blasts Trump's Arizona campaign rally

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.

RELATED: A look at Trump's Phoenix rally

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President Trump holds campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona
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President Trump holds campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump cheer before his arrival at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump listens to the cheering crowd at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 22: An inflatable depiction of Sheriff Joe Arpaio and President Donald Trump face protesters face the Phoenix Convention Center as protesters demonstrate against President Donald Trump during his rally at the convention center on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump cheer him at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
Members of the John Brown Gun Club sit with their guns outside of a campaign rally in Phoenix Arizona, U.S. August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Sandy Huffaker
U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, U.S., August 22, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 22: U.S. President Donald Trump gives a thumbs up to a crowd of supporters at the Phoenix Convention Center during a rally on August 22, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 22: A protester holds a painting depicting President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin outside the Phoenix Convention Center where a rally by Trump was being held on August 22, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. An earlier statement by the president that he was considering a pardon for Joe Arpaio,, the former sheriff of Maricopa County who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for defying a court order in a case involving racial profiling, has angered Latinos and immigrant rights advocates. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 22: A supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump holds up a sign as the president speaks to a crowd at the Phoenix Convention Center during a rally on August 22, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 22: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to supporters at the Phoenix Convention Center during a rally on August 22, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. An earlier statement by the president that he was considering a pardon for Joe Arpaio,, the former sheriff of Maricopa County who was convicted of criminal contempt of court for defying a court order in a case involving racial profiling, has angered Latinos and immigrant rights advocates. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
A supporter watches demonstrators gather outside the Phoenix, Arizona, Convention Center where US President Donald Trump will be speaking at a 'Make America Great Again' rally on August 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Laura Segall (Photo credit should read LAURA SEGALL/AFP/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - AUGUST 22: Protesters chant and wave signs across the street from the Phoenix Convention Center as President Donald Trump holds a rally at the convention center on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Demonstrators and supporters gather outside the Phoenix, Arizona, Convention Center where US President Donald Trump will be speaking at a 'Make America Great Again' rally on August 22, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Laura Segall (Photo credit should read LAURA SEGALL/AFP/Getty Images)
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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."

Clapper also 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've 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?'"

Click to watch Trump's full speech from Arizona on Tuesday:

 

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