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Conspiracy Theories

J.R. Majewski

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Republican House nominee J.R. Majewski is a frequent user and superfan of the white nationalist social media platform Gab and its antisemitic CEO, Andrew Torba. Majewski last year called Torba one of “America’s Greatest Patriots” and told him, “if there’s anything I can do to help you, just say the word. Pro Bono, I’m all in.”

Majewski is the Republican nominee for Ohio’s 9th Congressional District, which is considered a “toss-up” race. The NRCC, Republican Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, and former President Donald Trump are backing him. Before becoming a candidate, Majewski was a QAnon-supporting streamer who said, “I believe in everything that’s been put out from Q.” Majewski is also a January 6 insurrectionist who claimed that he “wanted nothing more than to go” into the Capitol, but stayed outside the building.

Gab is a haven for far-right extremists, including people who have been banned from other social media platforms. Many of its users are antisemites, neo-Nazis, and white nationalists. They also post calls for violence against Jewish people. In 2018, a Gab user posted antisemitic and violent remarks on the site before he allegedly killed 11 people in Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue.

Torba is an antisemite who has reposted attacks from other Gab users claiming that Jewish people are “subversive”; in control of the government, media, and financial institutions; and responsible for “white genocide.” He’s also reposted praise of Gab for offering “differing opinions” on the Holocaust.

Torba has stated that he supports a political movement which excludes Jewish people and other non-Christians. He said on July 22: “We don't want people who are Jewish.” He also stated that “we're not bending the knee to the 2% anymore” and won’t be “told what we're allowed to do in our own country by a 2% minority.”

The virulent antisemitism of Gab and of Torba has drawn heavy scrutiny after it was revealed that Republican Pennsylvania gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano paid the site $5,000 for “campaign consulting.”

Majewski has a verified Gab account and says that he has “been on gab since Day 1.” He has posted on Gab at least 390 times and has continued to use it despite Torba’s recent remarks against Jewish people. On his account, Majewski promotes his campaign and asks users for campaign donations.

Prior to running for Congress, Majewski used Gab to solicit attendees for the January 6 insurrection, writing: “Anyone plan on going to DC on the 6th? If you’re from Ohio or on the path from NW Ohio to DC and want to carpool or caravan, send me a message here or on Twitter.” (Torba and Gab also encouraged the January 6 insurrection.)

Majewski last year said that Torba is one of America’s greatest patriots and would do anything to help him. His 2021 remarks came after wide scrutiny of Gab for promoting antisemites, white nationalists, and violent extremists, including after the January 6 insurrection.

On January 16, 2021, Majewski wrote on Twitter: “Andrew Torba and @getongab are Patriots of the highest degree. Perfect example of an Outsider... tell us it cannot be done, or we can’t do it, and then watch.” After Torba said a bank had dropped Gab, Majewski told him on February 22, 2021: "Call them out. Personally I would drop my bank if it’s them. Rationale: You’ve treated on of America’s Greatest Patriots unfairly.”

He also thanked Torba on August 29, 2021, for making “sure I have a voice here on GAB.” And on January 16, 2021, he told Torba: “Brother @a if there’s anything I can do to help you, just say the word. Pro Bono, I’m all in. I’m 100% in this to help other Patriots.”

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

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Former President Donald Trump

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On August 20, 2022, Donald Trump will have been gone from the White House for 19 months. But Trump, unlike other former presidents, hasn’t disappeared from the headlines by any means — and on Monday, August 8, the most prominent topic on cable news was the FBI executing a search warrant at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in South Florida. Countless Republicans, from Fox News hosts to Trump himself, have been furiously railing against the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). And in an article published by Politico on August 11, reporters Kyle Cheney and Meridith McGraw describe the atmosphere of “paranoia” and suspicion that has become even worse in Trumpworld since the search.

“A wave of concern and even paranoia is gripping parts of Trumpworld as federal investigators tighten their grip on the former president and his inner circle,” Cheney and McGraw explain. “In the wake of news that the FBI agents executed a court-authorized search warrant at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, Trump’s allies and aides have begun buzzing about a host of potential explanations and worries. Among those being bandied about is that the search was a pretext to fish for other incriminating evidence, that the FBI doctored evidence to support its search warrant — and then planted some incriminating materials and recording devices at Mar-a-Lago for good measure — and even that the timing of the search was meant to be a historical echo of the day President Richard Nixon resigned in 1974.”

It was on August 8, 1974 that Nixon, overwhelmed by the Watergate scandal, announced his resignation. The following day, Vice President Gerald R. Ford was sworn in as president. And right-wing pundit Monica Crowley, on Steve Bannon’s “War Room,” claimed it was no coincidence that the FBI chose August 8 to execute the search warrant.

Crowley told “War Room” listeners, “There are no coincidences when it comes to the Deep State. They could have done this raid a couple of days before or tomorrow, but they chose August 8 for a reason.”

Cheney and McGraw stress that while Trumpworld is “deeply suspicious, even conspiratorial” to begin with, the Mar-a-Lago raid has made their “paranoia” even worse.

“Trump allies have begun pushing conspiracies to explain away the probe,” according to Cheney and McGraw. “The chatter was fed, in part, by two articles, one in Axios and the other in Newsweek, that suggested someone high up within Trump’s orbit had flipped and was cooperating with the government and that detailed the belief among some Trump hands that they had a mole. By late Wednesday afternoon, it had become an openly discussed topic on Fox News. And a story in the Wall Street Journal indicated that, in fact, a witness had been aiding investigators, telling the FBI that not all classified records had been disclosed during early negotiations and helping investigators pinpoint the location of missing records.”

The Politico reporters continue, “But the more aggressively pushed theory by Trump allies, at least in public, was the idea that evidence might have been planted by the FBI on the premises. Trump himself floated the idea in a post on his social media site, and it was amplified by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), as well as Fox News hosts like Jesse Watters, and even Trump’s own lawyer.”

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.