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Few people have done more to shape the Republican Party’s recent crusade against voting rights, or have been given more power and influence to regulate the polls, than Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

But now, Kobach’s career looks like it’s in freefall — exactly at the moment Kobach is trying to unseat fellow Republican Jeff Colyer for governor.

Kobach’s latest humiliation came on Friday. After Kobach was found in contempt of court, Republicans in the Kansas House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to ban state funds from being used to pay any penalties he might face.

According to the Topeka Capitol-Journal, the ban is likely illegal and unenforceable. But the vote is a stunning disavowal from the party that not only supported Kobach’s war on democracy but handed him the firepower to wage it.

Kobach has been a formidable force within the GOP as one of the loudest voices alleging massive illegal voting and pushing for severe restrictions at the polls.

Kobach was celebrated by Trump, who has repeatedly claimed he only lost the popular vote due to voter fraud (which has been disproven). He was even appointed to co-chair Mike Pence’s commission on “election integrity.”

The truth is that his claim of an epidemic of noncitizen voting does not exist. His “reforms” just block legal voters, most of which are low-income and non-white.

Koback attempted to implement many laws known to hold up voters, including requiring voters to submit proof of citizenship before registering — which was repeatedly shot down in court. His personal investigators found barely any cases of voter fraud. And his plan for excessive voter cross-checking is quietly being abandoned, with eight states pulling out over concerns the system is inaccurate and insecure.

And Trump’s voter fraud commission collapsed, after state leaders in both parties refused to submit data and the commission was sued by one of its own members.

As a final humiliation, Kobach was found in contempt of court and ordered to pay the ACLU’s legal fees after the organization sued him for his voter suppression tactics.

Judge Julie Robinson, a George W. Bush appointee, had to reprimand him for not following court procedure, and his own witnesses failed to provide one example of an election being swayed by noncitizen voters.

It seems like Republicans have caught on that their once rising star is a failure. And they want no part of the fallout from his disgrace.

IMAGE: Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach looks on as he talks about the Kansas voter ID law in his Topeka, Kansas office May 12, 2016. REUTERS/Dave Kaup

Blake Neff

Twitter screenshot

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.

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.