Tag: nick fuentes
Nick Fuentes

Rumble To Host Third GOP Debate As Neo-Nazi Fuentes Grows Audience There

Between vile antisemitic statements, white nationalist influencer and Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes has been celebrating his viewership on Rumble, the alternative video hosting site and exclusive streaming partner for the upcoming Republican presidential debate. While Fuentes is a constant source of extreme hatred and bigotry, his comments are especially disturbing as incidents of antisemitism have increased around the world in the context of Israel’s siege on Gaza following the October 7 Hamas attack. In addition to Rumble, NBC News will partner with the Republican Jewish Coalition to host the third GOP presidential debate.

Fuentes streams live on Rumble multiple times a week, usually for well over an hour at a time. Since the outbreak of violence in Israel and Gaza in October, he’s been using the opportunity to double down on his antisemitic and white nationalist rhetoric.

“It's not just the mass migration, it's not just that the country's becoming non-white, it's that the country is being held hostage by Jews,” Fuentes told his more than 40 thousand Rumble followers on October 31.

During the same stream, Fuentes noted that his audience size has grown and is now perhaps even greater than it was on YouTube before he was banned from the site. He said, “And now, I think the show is bigger than it's been in a really long time.”

A week prior, Fuentes claimed that those who have lost their jobs for supporting Palestine prove the validity of his attacks against Jewish people and summarized his antisemitic views: “Why do these Zionist Jews have so much power in Western countries? I guess that means Nick Fuentes was right, and it isn’t Klaus Schwab. It's the Zionists, and it's the Jews. It's organized Jewry.”

He continued, warning against what he described as “a lot of Jews that are sneaking into the dissident conversation because they wanna control all the opposition” and arguing that Jewish people are attempting to co-opt racism to be used against Palestinians. But, he claimed, “We’re more antisemitic than we’re racist.”

Having previously served as an adviser to rapper Ye’s 2024 presidential campaign, Fuentes complained, “They did the same thing last year with Ye. When Ye was out there saying, ‘I love Hitler. Jews control the media.’” Fuentes continued, claiming “based right-wing Jews” attacked the rapper and had questioned, “‘Since when did we start supporting Black guys?’” Fuentes quickly followed up: “When they started saying they love Hitler. About right around then.”

Despite his extensive use of the site, Fuentes has a strained relationship with Rumble. Media Matters reported that for a short period, Fuentes was suspended from livestreaming to the platform and restricted to only uploading “replays,” or previously recorded content, after having some of his videos removed from the site for violating the platform’s policies against “incitement to violence.” As recently as August 8, it appears Fuentes had resumed streaming directly to Rumble, and he has since celebrated his popularity on the site.

Rumble was also the exclusive livestreaming partner for the last two GOP debates and now, alongside the RNC and the Republican Jewish Coalition, is partnering to host the third. The platform is rife with violent extremism, misinformation, and other harmful content and serves as an alternative “free speech” space for exiled far-right figures to share the hateful rhetoric other sites have banned.

Rumble also makes money off the antisemitic, white nationalist, and QAnon content on the site. Rumble even placed RNC ads on a number of pro-Hitler videos, on top of providing a home to creators who deny the Holocaust, praise Nazis, and even call for the murder of Catholic Charity workers.

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

Scandal: Racists And Antisemites Deeply Entrenched In Texas Republican Party

Scandal: Racists And Antisemites Deeply Entrenched In Texas Republican Party

By Robert Downen

Faced with ongoing scandals this month involving his allies' ties to antisemitic extremists, the leader of the Republican Party of Texas has come out strongly—to attack other conservatives who’ve criticized his friends.

For three weeks, Texas GOP chair Matt Rinaldi has been defiant in the face of calls from members of his own party to cut ties with Defend Texas Liberty leader Jonathan Stickland, who recently hosted avowed white supremacist Nick Fuentes at his office for nearly seven hours. And he’s gone after those who’ve been critical of Defend Texas Liberty, a political action committee that is funded by two of the Texas GOP’s most prolific donors.

Separately, Rinaldi is at the center of a parallel controversy involving a group for young conservatives that he recently embraced despite warnings about its leaders’ openly antisemitic views and ties to white nationalist figures.

For some Republicans, the dual scandals have raised serious questions about the party’s willingness to denounce racists — and its leader’s proximity to those who embrace them.

“He has put his friends’ interests above what is in the best interest of the party,” said Mark McCaig, an attorney and chair of the Texas Republican Initiative. “He is more concerned about protecting them and their gang.”

To be sure, Rinaldi was quick to distance himself from Fuentes. The Texas Tribune spotted Rinaldi earlier this month at the office building where Fuentes, an Adolf Hitler admirer who has called for a “holy war” against Jews and encouraged his followers to beat women, was being hosted by Stickland.

Asked about the October 6 meeting, Rinaldi told the Tribune that he had no idea Fuentes was inside and would never meet with him. As for Stickland? Rinaldi said he would wait until more facts came out before commenting on his longtime political kin.

“I’m not going to make assumptions based on what I'm told by a reporter,” he said on Oct. 8.

Since then, neither Rinaldi nor the Republican Party of Texas has commented on Stickland, even as other major figures — including Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Kyle Rittenhouse — have issued statements that confirmed the Tribune’s reporting. Nor has Rinaldi responded to concerns from fellow Republicans and some party executive committee members who’ve called for a break with Defend Texas Liberty, which has donated $257,000 to the party since 2021.

Instead, Rinaldi has reserved his ire for House Speaker Dade Phelan, accusing the Beaumont Republican of politicizing antisemitism before demanding his resignation. Phelan has also demanded Rinaldi step down as the party’s leader and give money the Texas GOP received from Defend Texas Liberty to pro-Israel charities.

Since news of the Fuentes meeting broke, Rinaldi has posted or amplified attacks on Phelan or the Texas House on X, formerly Twitter, more than 40 times. He has not, however, publicly criticized Stickland or Defend Texas Liberty at all — even as new information continues to emerge about their close ties to white supremacists.

On Monday, the Tribunereported that, in just the last month, at least five current and former Fuentes associates have worked with groups that are closely tied to Stickland, Rinaldi and Defend Texas Liberty. That includes True Texas Project, whose leaders have sympathized with the racist gunman who murdered 22 people at an El Paso WalMart in 2019, and who are set to host Rinaldi for a fundraiser and softball game this weekend.

On Wednesday, the Texas Observerreported that a swastika-clad neo-Nazi who was spotted handing out antisemitic flyers in Fort Worth this month had previously interned for Luke Macias, a longtime GOP consultant and Rinaldi ally who just replaced Stickland as president of Defend Texas Liberty, according to the group’s website.

And this week, the Tribunereported that the president of Texans For Strong Borders, Chris Russo, has for years been a prominent figure in Fuentes’ racist movement, and has continued to post on anonymous, hate-filled social media accounts as his group —with help from Rinaldi and Defend Texas Liberty — has emerged as an influential voice that’s pushed lawmakers to crack down on legal and illegal immigration.

Rinaldi and the Texas GOP did not respond to multiple requests for comment for this story.

‘A moral obligation’

The controversies come amid an internecine fight between the state’s far right and the Texas GOP’s more moderate, but still deeply conservative, wing. That strife has exploded into all-out war since the impeachment and acquittal of Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Rinaldi ally who has received nearly $4.65 million from West Texas oil billionaires Tim Dunn and Farris and Dan and Farris Wilks. Those billionaires also fund Defend Texas Liberty and, before that, bankrolled Rinaldi’s career in the Texas House.

Defend Texas Liberty has been one of the most important players in the state party’s ongoing civil war. Campaign finance records show that, since 2021, it has given nearly $15 million to right-wing movements and candidates. The group made headlines this summer after giving $3 million to Patrick, months before he presided over Paxton’s impeachment trial. Defend Texas Liberty also gave $3.6 million to Don Huffines, a former state senator who helped push Gov. Greg Abbott to the right by attacking him on immigration and other issues during last year’s Republican primary.

Meanwhile, the Texas GOP’s far right has continued to embrace groups and individuals that others have warned are a bridge too far. Fuentes was the best-known of those extreme figures; but his visit and the ensuing controversy were punctuated by a separate-but-related, scandal involving the party and white supremacists.

That ordeal dates back to August, when the 66-year-old Texas Young Republican Federation voted to end its partnership with the Texas GOP until Rinaldi — who the group accused of initiating a “smear campaign” and partnering with far-right figures to undermine their newly-elected leadership — was removed from his position.

Things escalated last month, when Rinaldi pushed for the Texas GOP to bring a newly-formed spinoff group into the party despite warnings that its leaders included avowed white nationalists.

The warnings proved to be right: Days after the Tribune first reported on Fuentes’ visit with Stickland, an independent journalist reported that leaders of the new young Republicans group had praised Hitler online, and published photos of some of its leaders outside of an event for Fuentes’ vitriolically antisemitic “groyper” movement.

“There was a time in my life when I hated Nick Fuentes and his white supremacy views,” one of the group’s leaders, Rylie Rae, reportedly wrote on social media last year. “Now I recognize that he is one of the smartest people in our country and we need white nationalism. Oh how the tides have turned.”

Responding to the controversy, the new group’s leadership said in a statement that it “condemns bigotry in all forms” and had removed the individuals in question.

But before that, other young Republicans said they made clear to Rinaldi and the leaders of the new group that they were in bed with extremists. Those concerns were rebuffed, a move that one person said is emblematic of a broader problem and power struggle that has allowed extremists to flourish in Republican circles.

“There is a tendency among the populist right to essentially say, ‘It doesn’t matter how awful the person is, as long as they are on our side,’“ said Matt Wiltshire, finance director for the Young Republican National Federation. “We believe that we have a moral and ethical duty to be uncompromising in our stance that there is right and there is wrong.”

One of those removed was Konner Earnest, who led the group’s Parker County chapter and also recently became involved with the European American Community, a white nationalist group that argues American citizenship should be based on European ancestry.

Earnest has other ties to Rinaldi and Defend Texas Liberty: He was spotted outside the Fuentes meeting with Stickland, and has appeared in videos for Russo’s Texans For Strong Borders, which has received considerable financial support from Defend Texas Liberty. Earnest has also written anti-immigration articles for Texas Scorecard, a prominent right-wing media website that is financed by Defend Texas Liberty’s billionaire funders.

Rinaldi does not appear to have released any public statement or made any comment on social media about the young Republicans scandal.

Meanwhile, the Texas GOP’s executive committee remains at an impasse over how to respond to the party’s ongoing white supremacist problem.

Last week, after Stickland was quietly removed as Defend Texas Liberty’s president, roughly one-third of the executive committee's 64 members, including Vice Chair Dana Myers, signed a letter saying that the party had a “moral obligation to speak boldly, publicly, and clearly on this matter” and demand an explanation for the Fuentes meeting.

“Fuentes' views and Stickland’s tactics are abhorrent and totally antithetical to the principles of the Republican Party of Texas and to the conservatives who have trusted [Defend Texas Liberty] for the cause of liberty and patriotism,” they wrote. “Whether this was caused by a lapse in judgment, conscious disregard, poor leadership, or a faulty moral compass –– Stickland and [Defend Texas Liberty] must ultimately accept responsibility.”

The members also called on the Texas GOP — as well as its donors — to cut all ties with Defend Texas Liberty and the myriad groups it funds until Stickland is "removed and disassociated from [Defend Texas Liberty] and its benefactor organizations and a full accounting of the meeting is provided."

Since then, the party’s disagreements have continued to escalate in public view, as Rinaldi and his allies remain largely silent on the scandal. Two weeks ago — and after a Tribune reporter reached out to more than a dozen members of the party’s executive committee regarding Defend Texas Liberty — the Texas GOP removed contact information for executive committee members from its website.

The Texas GOP did not respond to a request for comment on the move, which has been publicly blasted as an attempt to keep members from being contacted by the public.

“You don’t stand for ‘we the people’ unless they have access to you,” said Cat Parks, a former executive committee member and vice chair of the Texas GOP. “It’s not like controversy didn’t happen during my tenure.”

For now, it’s unclear what comes next for the Texas GOP and its relationship with Defend Texas Liberty, which released a two-sentence statement saying it opposes Fuentes’ “incendiary” views but has yet to provide any other details on the meeting. Stickland may no longer be leading the group, but his removal is likely cosmetic given that he also owns Pale Horse Strategies, a consulting firm that is used heavily by Defend Texas Liberty-funded groups and candidates.

Members of the party’s executive committee have said as much this week, and reiterated their calls for the party to speak out against Defend Texas Liberty and Stickland.

The Texas GOP “must renounce [Defend Texas Liberty] until a full explanation of the Fuentes meeting is provided, those responsible are held accountable and there’s new entirely new leadership (not just the same players swapping job titles),” executive committee member Rolando Garcia wrote this week on social media.

“Don’t excuse the inexcusable just to spite your political enemies,” he added.

Reprinted with permission from Daily kos.

Dan Patrick

Top Texas Republicans Split Angrily Over Big Donor's Ties To Neo-Nazi Fuentes

Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick is expressing anger and outrage after his state’s Speaker of the House, a fellow Republican, issued a statement denouncing an influential far-right activist, donor and Super PAC head, saying, “The Republican Party is no place for Hitler apologists.”

Speaker Dade Phelan on Monday demanded the Lt. Governor give away $3 million in donations he received from Defend Texas Liberty PAC, whose President, Jonathan Stickland, he says, “fraternized for six hours with a notorious, anti-Semitic, nazi sympathizer who denies the existence of the Holocaust.” Stickland is the Republican former Texas state representative who reportedly said in 2008, “Rape is non existent in marriage, take what you want my friend!” and has called vaccines “sorcery.”

Phelan was referring to “notorious white supremacist and antisemite Nick Fuentes,” writes Mark Pitcavage, a Senior Research Fellow at the ADL Center on Extremism.

“At a time when we are witnessing heinous attacks on our Israeli allies by Hamas terrorists – the most egregious assault on Jewish lives since the Holocaust – Jonathan Stickland, the President of Defend Texas Liberty PAC, fraternized for six hours with a notorious, anti-Semitic, nazi sympathizer who denies the existence of the Holocaust,” wrote Phelan, citing a Texas Tribune report from Sunday.

“This not just a casual misstep. It’s indicative of the moral, political rot that has been festering in a certain segment of our party for far too long. Anti-Semitism, bigotry and Hitler apologists should find no sanctuary in the Republican party. Period. We cannot – and must not – tolerate the tacit endorsement of such vile ideologies.”

Phelan continued, saying, “I call upon any elected official who has accepted political donations from Defend Texas Liberty PAC, or any of its affiliate organizations, to immediately redirect every single cent of those contributions to a charitable organization of his or her choice.”

“Furthermore, I call upon elected officials and candidates to state unequivocally that they will not accept further contributions, including in-kind contributions, from the Defend Texas Liberty PAC. Recently, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick took $3 million from this organization. I expect him to lead the way in redirecting these funds.”

“Additionally, the Republican Party of Texas has received $132,500 during this election cycle from the Defend Texas Liberty PAC. As of their last report, RPT had just under $50,000 on hand. I call upon Chairman Matt Rinaldi to direct the party to donate these Defend Texas Liberty funds to charity. And if doing so would take the party into the red, I would be happy to provide a short-term loan until Chairman Rinaldi can replace the money with other donations.”

“There is no excuse to keep tainted funds from an organization that provides a platform for hatemongers, sexual predators, racists and nazi sympathizers.”

The Texas Tribune report noted that it had “observed Texas GOP chair Matt Rinaldi outside the building, but he denied meeting Fuentes and denounced him.”

Just a few hours after Phelan’s statement, Lt. Gov. Patrick demanded the Speaker resign.

“I didn’t think even Dade Phelan would stoop this low,” Patrick in a statement, Austin, Texas’ KDFM reports. “He has now absolutely hit rock bottom. His latest political stunt is disgusting, despicable, and disingenuous. With nearly 1,000 dead and over a hundred kidnapped, anyone who would use the war in Israel for their own political purposes is revolting, repulsive, and repugnant. Nick Fuentes and his anti-Semitic rhetoric have no place in the United States. Those who spew such vile, loathsome, abominations will have to answer for it.”

“For anyone to try to use these invectives for their own political gain is below contempt,” Patrick aded. “I am calling on Dade Phelan to resign his position before the House gavels in this afternoon. There is no place in Texas political discourse for any elected official to use the atrocities in Israel for their own political gain. That’s what Dade Phelan is doing. At this point, he’s simply got to go.”

KDFM adds that “Patrick’s denunciation of Fuentes comes after Fuentes met with Defend Texas Liberty PAC leadership, from whom Patrick accepted $3 million.”

Reprinted with permission from AlterNet

Paul Gosar

Gosar Promotes Antisemitic Website That Praises Hitler, Denies Holocaust

Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) yesterday used his House.gov newsletter to promote USSA News, a fringe site that has posted content calling the Holocaust “the Holohoax” and telling readers to “stand up for Hitler.” Gosar’s promotion of the antisemitic outlet comes just months after he sent followers to a different site that has also denied the Holocaust and praised Adolf Hitler.

Gosar has frequently promoted antisemitic media in recent years. He has met with Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes and repeatedly spoke at his conferences; and he’s promoted virulent antisemite Vincent James Foxx.

Gosar drew criticism in April after he used his newsletter to direct people to a story that praised him for attacking “Jewish warmongers” for their support of Ukraine. Gosar linked to Veterans Today, an antisemitic website that has called the Holocaust a “lie” and a “hoax” and praised Hitler as a “great man” and “a man of valor.” TPM reported in May that Gosar has employed an aide that's connected to Fuentes and the white nationalist movement.

In his July 23 newsletter, under the section “Gosar in the News and Other Must-Read Stories,” Gosar wrote: “USSA News: Biden White House Out To ‘Censor’ Press, ‘Silence’ Opponents, Lawmakers Charge” and sent readers to USSANews.com. Gosar was linking to the site even though the article is a repost of a piece from The Heritage Foundation publication The Daily Signal. (Elsewhere in the newsletter, Gosar writes that “there is zero room in our society for these vile, hateful and bigoted comments in the Halls of Congress” and “anti-Jewish and anti-Israel statements by members of Congress must be condemned.”) Gosar previously linked to USSA News on April 2 and August 7, 2022.

Gosar was sending readers to a site that has repeatedly posted content that denies the Holocaust and defends Hitler. Here are four examples from just the past week and in the days prior to the Gosar mention:

  • USSA News on July 22 posted: “David Cole, a Jew, explores Auschwitz and debunks the claims that it was an industrial death camp – still on youtube for now but as more countries outlaw questioning the ‘holocaust’, it is uploaded here in case it is removed to censor inconvenient evidence.”
  • USSA News on July 21 posted: “Making Adolf Hitler into a Jewish-controlled agent is quite a brilliant plot by International Jewry to divert newcomers away from learning the true history & background of National Socialism (Slavery). Don’t be fooled! … Stand up for Hitler and National Socialism (Slavery)!!” The piece then promoted content on Renegade Tribune, a neo-Nazi site.
  • USSA News on July 20 posted an article from the antisemitic site Unz Review attacking Jewish people, which begins by stating: “Untrue stories exist at each end of Jewish history’s three thousand years – fictional, fabricated and of immense magnitude.” It then claimed: “Towards the end of the 20th century as belief in the origin stories was fading away, the Holohoax morphed into a fearsome modern religion, in which belief is compulsory.”
  • USSA News on July 17 lionized Hitler by writing that “the Kalergi Plan consists of the genocide of white people through miscegenation and mass immigration of non-whites to Europe. … Hitler was aware of Kalergi’s plan and did everything in his power to prevent it. Like Gobineau, Hitler considered the Aryan race to be the noblest, the best armed for the struggle for existence, the most beautiful, the most energetic, and the one with the greatest amount of creative genius. What this race lost by mixing it was not compensated by what the others gained by ennoblement.”

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.