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Trump projected his guilt onto Hillary Clinton because he knew he committed a crime.

John projected his guilt and accused Janet of having committed the crime he committed.

You can't project guilt onto someone if you know the other person is innocent and you're guilty of the crime she is accused of committing right? The crimes must be different in order for the expression to make any sense, correct?

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  • Why do you think that is the case? It seems to me both examples are "projecting guilt."
    – randomhead
    Jul 21 at 22:54
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This is a special meaning of project:

American Heritage Dictionary

  1. (Psychology) To attribute (one's own emotion or motive, for example) to someone else unconsciously in order to avoid anxiety or guilt.

Merriam-Webster

  1. to attribute (one's own ideas, feelings, or characteristics) to other people or to objects

The crimes don't have to be completely different. If I am guilty of being rude to people, I may accuse someone else of being rude to deflect attention from myself. Then I have projected my own rudeness on them.

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