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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

A Republican congressional candidate believes that a secret ring of pedophiles is controlling world events.

Matthew Lusk is currently running unopposed in the nomination for Florida’s 5th Congressional District, the seat currently held by Rep. Al Lawson (D-FL). In the most recent election, Rep. Lawson easily defeated his Republican challenger 66.8 percent to 33.2 percent.

Lusk is a believer in the so-called “QAnon” conspiracy theory, a collection of oddball beliefs shared amongst diehard Trump fans. They believe that Trump is the ringleader in a vast, underground war against sex traffickers hidden within American politics and the Hollywood elite.

Online QAnon posts are a “legitimate something,” Lusk told the Daily Beast.

He has a section of his official website dedicated to “Q,” the supposed leader of the belief, who some believe is JFK Jr. The son of President John F. Kennedy actually died in a tragic 1999 plane crash.

Lusk also told the site he is worried about being “Arkancided.” That is a reference to a long-running and absurd conspiracy theory on the right — popularized by figures like radio host Rush Limbaugh— that Bill and Hillary Clinton have literally murdered their political rivals.

Nearly 50 deaths have been falsely attributed to the Clintons over the years.

Lusk’s embrace of conspiracy reflects the mental state of the Republican Party under Trump’s leadership.

Trump is a dedicated conspiracy theorist and over the years he has professed oddball beliefs with alarming regularity. Trump pushed the racist lie that President Barack Obama was not born in the United States, claimed climate change is a Chinese hoax, said Hillary Clinton defeated him in the popular vote due to “illegal” votes and insists that a “deep state” conspiracy is out to get him.

Trump’s team has helped fan the flames of the QAnon conspiracy by giving out White House press credentials to a pro-QAnon site, and QAnon signs and hand gestures have become a staple of Trump’s feverish campaign rallies.

Conspiracy theories were once confined to the fevered swamps, away from the Republican Party’s mainstream. But now they are the party’s lifeblood, and candidates across the country have bought into the absurdity.

Published with permission of The American Independent.

Actor as Donald Trump in Russia Today video ad

Screenshot from RT's 'Trump is here to make RT Great Again'

Russia Today, the network known in this country as RT, has produced a new "deep fake" video that portrays Donald Trump in post-presidential mode as an anchor for the Kremlin outlet. Using snippets of Trump's own voice and an actor in an outlandish blond wig, the ad suggests broadly that the US president is indeed a wholly owned puppet of Vladimir Putin– as he has so often given us reason to suspect.

"They're very nice. I make a lot of money with them," says the actor in Trump's own voice. "They pay me millions and hundreds of millions."

But when American journalists described the video as "disturbing," RT retorted that their aim wasn't to mock Trump, but his critics and every American who objects to the Russian manipulations that helped bring him to power.

As an ad for RT the video is amusing, but the network's description of it is just another lie. Putin's propagandists are again trolling Trump and America, as they've done many times over the past few years –- and this should be taken as a warning of what they're doing as Election Day approaches.

The Lincoln Project aptly observed that the Russians "said the quiet part out loud" this time, (Which is a bad habit they share with Trump.)