Republicans Both Dismiss and Embrace QAnon

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and President Trump

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is facing a potential challenge to his caucus leadership thanks in part to the prevalence of QAnon-loving congressional candidates who are making rank-and-file Republicans more than a little bit nervous. Georgia’s Marjorie Taylor Greene has gotten the ‘Q’ headlines recently, but the GOP’s Q troubles include Lauren “Q*Bert” Boebert, the Republican nominee for Congress in CO-3.

As The Washington Post reported last week:

A cluster of GOP lawmakers is starting to privately question whether the California Republican is putting loyalty to the president over the good of the conference. And a small group of members is discussing whether someone should challenge him for minority leader if Trump is defeated Nov. 3.

The matter bubbled to the surface this week with the primary election of Marjorie Taylor Greene, a fringe House candidate in Georgia who espouses the QAnon conspiracy theory and has made numerous racist comments. Multiple Republicans implored McCarthy to help defeat her by supporting her primary opponent. But McCarthy refused, phoning the candidate in an apparent peace accord before the primary, while Trump embraced her on Twitter this week as a “future Republican Star.” [Pols emphasis]

McCarthy seems to have gotten the message that he needs to pretend to oppose QAnon conspiracists, telling multiple news outlets this week that he does not agree with QAnon theories and that “there is no place” for QAnon in the Republican Party. Except, well, that’s not really true.

Via The Hill (8/21/20)

In an interview with CNN on Friday, Vice President Mike Pence said “we dismiss conspiracy theories around here out of hand.” But earlier this week, President Trump publicly embraced QAnon followers, in no small part because Trump “understands” that QAnon followers tend to think he is some sort of pedophile-hunting superhero.

Despite his admonitions about QAnon-supporting candidates, McCarthy is headed to Aspen later this month to raise money for Boebert. The Rifle restaurant owner sometimes says she is not a QAnon believer but can’t seem to stop promoting QAnon conspiracy theories (HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE).

Boebert infamously said back in May that she hoped QAnon was real. In an interview on the Q-loving show “Steel Truth,” Boebert said this about QAnon:

“Honestly, everything that I’ve heard on ‘Q’ — I hope that this is real, because it only means that America is getting stronger and better, and people are returning to conservative values. And that’s what I am for. And, so, everything that I have heard of this movement is only motivating and encouraging and bringing people together, stronger, and if this is real, then it could be really great for our country.”

It’s not hard to see what’s happening here. McCarthy doesn’t want his caucus (or sane voters) to think Republicans actually believe in QAnon conspiracies, but candidates such as Boebert and Greene have gone too far down that rabbit hole to plausibly pretend that they aren’t true ‘Q’ adherents. McCarthy will thus pay lip service to dismissing QAnon — and will instruct Boebert and friends to do the same — but in the meantime he’ll keep on campaigning and raising money to help bring ‘Q’ to Congress.

9 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. RepealAndReplace says:

    Schrodinger's Q-Anon?

  2. davebarnes says:

    “If she’s the future of the Republican party, we’re in trouble,” Denver Riggleman (R-VA) “QAnon is the mental gonorrhea of conspiracy theories. It’s disgusting, and you want to get rid of it as fast as possible.”

  3. Ckonola says:

    Boebert was the key-note speaker at the Mesa County GOP luncheon today. Janet Rowland (remember her?) is running for County Commission and is actively promoting Boebert on her campaign page. Both are dangerous. What has me even more perplexed is Tim Foster, President of CMU has endorsed Rowland–not in his capacity as University President, but as an individual. Think about that. A University President is endorsing a candidate who elicited a Westword article titled Beauty and the Beastiality while running for Lt. Gov; who got fired from a free newspaper for plagiarism; who insisted on prayers “in the name of Jesus” at every City Council Meeting despite being advised otherwise by three attorneys; and who is now promoting maskless freedumb.  Maskless and plagiarim seem something that a University President should be running from as fast as he can. 


    • gertie97 says:

      Timmy owns Rowland. It's that simple.

    • RepealAndReplace says:

      Is she still fixated on sex with animals?

    • Duke Cox says:

      We have seen this principle at work before. The GOP in these parts have always sought the candidates that will vote as they are instructed. They will put up with a lot of low brow silliness, corruption (certainly), ignorance (Ray…looking at you), and any other flaw which might otherwise disqualify a candidate from the responsibility of leadership.

      Perhaps you remember Laura Bradfords’ speech at some downtown GOP function ( I think you were there) where she donned a goofy looking R/W/B engineers’ costume and did a “little engine that could” routine. I was embarrassed for her.

      Lauren is another odd-ball who appears to have sufficient drive and willingness to advance in politics. The New Trumplican© Party, will ride that pony ’til it pulls up lame. 

  4. ParkHill says:

    Coming in the next weeks:

    My canary in the Q-mine is already pushing heavily into the pedofile meme-storm. Not just the demonstration the other week, it seems to be a full-on "Fill the Zone with Shit".

    The basis seems to be the Epstein/Ghislaine affair, and the Ghislaine arrest. Lots of assertions about Democratic politicians and in particular Big Bill. 

  5. kwtree says:

    Tomorrow 11 am local time: “Save the Post Office” demonstrations in Denver, Golden, the Springs, Pueblo, and several other Colorado post office locations. Details are on the Move On organizing page, along with printable signs and messaging guidance. There are also “at-home” options to support the USPS.

    This is part of a unified national demonstration in hundreds of post offices, and is organized by Move On , with coalitions organizing, as well.

    People attending should be masked, distanced, peaceful, legal, and nonviolent. I’m going to the Kipling/Alameda Federal Center branch. 

    Background: Louis DeJoy, Trump’s Postmaster, has removed hundreds of mailboxes in urban (Democratic) neighborhoods, as well as 700 sorting machines which would normally be used to sort mail ballots.

    DeJoy, in response to public pressure, has said that he wouldn’t remove any more boxes or sorters, but has no plans to replace any of those already junked. In addition, there was a shakeup of management and new rules for how long mail can be left undelivered.

    Most people see this as a voter suppression ploy, since more people will be trying to vote by mail this year. Massive public pushback is needed to thwart these efforts.

    See you there!

  6. harrydoby says:

    This is what it has come to:

    Political cartoon

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