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tony perkins

 

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

According to an LAPolitics report, right-wing activist and former Louisiana state representative Tony Perkins is considering running for Congress in Louisiana’s 6th District, a seat that is currently held by Rep. Bill Cassidy (R).

Even by the far right-wing standards of this House of Representatives, Perkins — who is best known as the president of the Family Research Council, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has classified as an anti-gay hate group — is too extreme to serve as a representative in the people’s House.

Here are five reasons why Tony Perkins is unfit for Congress.

Bought A Mailing List From The KKK

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In 1996, while serving as the campaign manager for Republican U.S. Senate candidate Woody Jenkins, Perkins paid $82,500 to former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke for his mailing list. The Federal Election Commission would later fine Jenkins’ campaign $3,000 for attempting to hide the transaction.

Photo: Arete13 via Flickr

Addressed A Hate Group In Front Of A Confederate Flag

In 2001, Perkins delivered a speech to the Council of Conservative Citizens, a hate group that considers African-Americans to be “a retrograde species of humanity.”

Perkins would later claim that he was unaware of the group’s racist ideology — which is rather hard to believe, considering that he delivered the speech in front of a Confederate flag:

Slammed Anti-Bullying Campaign As “Disgusting,” “Immoral”

It Gets Better

Most of Perkins’ career at the Family Research Council has been devoted to spreading anti-LGBT propaganda. Among the most egregious examples came in 2011, when Perkins signed a fundraising letter ripping the Obama administration for supporting the “It Gets Better” project, which encourages people to speak out against the bullying of LGBT teens.

After describing the campaign as “aimed at persuading kids that although they’ll face struggles and perhaps bullying for ‘coming out’ as homosexual (or transgendered or some other perversion), life will get better,” Perkins labeled the effort “disgusting” and “part of a concerted effort…to recruit [children] into that ‘lifestyle.'”

“Can you imagine George Washington, Ronald Reagan, or any other president telling children that it’s okay to be immoral and that they’ll eventually feel better about it?” Perkins asked.

Photo: skampy via Flickr

Defended Uganda’s Anti-Gay Bill

Uganda

In perhaps his most offensive anti-gay crusade, in 2010 Perkins spoke out in favor of Uganda’s infamous “kill the gays bill,” which would make being gay punishable by life in prison, and allow the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality.”

Perkins argued that the egregious human rights violation was actually an effort to “uphold moral conduct that protects others and in particular the most vulnerable.”

Photo: CIDSE via Flickr

Spreads Outrageous Conspiracy Theories

Tony Perkins

Perkins has proven himself to be very willing to push some conspiracy theories so ridiculousthey would make would-be colleagues like Louie Gohmert and Michele Bachmann blush. Among countless other examples, Perkins and the Family Research Council have warned that the government promotes same-sex marriage as part of a population control plot, that the Obama administration plans to ban anyone identified as an “evangelical, Bible-believing fundamentalist” from purchasing firearms, and that ACORN will use the Affordable Care Act to commit voter fraud (despite no longer existing).

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Blake Neff

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Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters

On July 10, CNN's Oliver Darcy reported that Blake Neff, the top writer for Tucker Carlson's prime-time Fox News show, had been anonymously posting racist, misogynistic, homophobic, and other offensive content on an online forum for five years. Neff used racist and homophobic slurs, referred to women in a derogatory manner, and pushed white supremacist content while writing for Carlson's show. Neff resigned after CNN contacted him for comment.

As Darcy reported, in an interview with the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine, Neff claimed anything Carlson read during his show was initially drafted by him. Darcy also found instances where there was "some overlap between the forum and the show," as sometimes the "material Neff encountered on the forum found its way on to Carlson's show."

During a 2018 appearance on Fox's The Five to promote his book Ship of Fools, Carlson mentioned Neff by name, calling him a "wonderful writer." Carlson also included Neff in the acknowledgments of the book.


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Before joining Fox News, Neff worked at The Daily Caller, a conservative news outlet that Carlson co-founded. The outlet has published a number of white supremacists, anti-Semites, and bigots.


Carlson has a long history of promoting white supremacist content on his show. His show has featured many guests who have connections to white supremacy and far-right extremism. Carlson has regularly been praised by Neo-Nazis and various far-right extremist figures, and he's been a hero on many white supremacist podcasts. Users of the extremist online message boards 4chan and 8chan have repeatedly praised Carlson.

The manifesto released by the gunman who killed 20 people in El Paso, Texas, in 2019 was strewn with content that echoed talking points from Carlson's show. Days after the shooting, Carlson declared that calling white supremacy a serious issue is a "hoax" as it is "actually not a real problem in America."

Carlson has been hemorrhaging advertisers following his racist coverage of the Black Lives Matters movement and the recent protests against police brutality. Now that we know his top writer was using content from white supremacist online message boards for Carlson's show, it is more imperative than ever that advertisers distance their brands away from this toxicity.