Our new book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. Among other things, it discusses the state of the parties. The state of the GOP is not good. Trump and his minions falsely claimed that he won the election, and have kept repeating the Big Lie. And we now know how close he came to subverting the Constitution.
David Gilbert and Cameron Joseph at VICE:
EXCLUSIVE: Author of Jan 6 coup memo John Eastman told us Mike Pence didn't take his solid legal advice & overturn the election bc Pence is "an establishment guy"— Lauren Windsor (@lawindsor) October 26, 2021
(He previously told @NRO the memo was not “viable” and would have been “crazy” to pursue.)
Stay tuned for Part 2. pic.twitter.com/RQeUceH1bn
A coalition of right-wing MAGA candidates, including multiple Trump-backed candidates, are seeking to take control of elections in states across the U.S.—and one says they’re formally working with a group of conspiracy theorists, as well as with a QAnon influencer who some in the conspiracy movement believe is John F. Kennedy Jr. in disguise.
The group consists of five GOP candidates running for the key election position of secretary of state in Arizona, Nevada, Michigan, Georgia, and California, as well as one Pennsylvania lawmaker who may run for governor, which in Pennsylvania appoints the secretary of state. According to one of the candidates, it also has support from wealthy conspiracy theorists Mike Lindell and Patrick Byrne.
The reported coalition is just the latest example of how extreme QAnon-inspired conspiracy theories about election fraud and vote-rigging have become pervasive in the Republican Party, and how those conspiracies are now driving this group to seek to take control of key election positions across the country ahead of the 2024 election.
The existence of the group, which doesn’t seem to have a name, was revealed by Nevada secretary of state candidate Jim Marchant at the “For God & Country: Patriot Double Down” conference that took place in Las Vegas over the weekend.
Marchant, a former Nevada state legislator who lost a hotly contested race for Congress in 2020, told the crowd that the genesis for the coalition began on November 4 last year, the day after he lost to Rep. Steven Hosford in the race for a House seat. Like Trump, Marchant claims the election was stolen from him. And so, in his words, he “got to work.”
“I got a suite in the Venetian hotel across the hall from the Trump attorneys and the Trump people that came in to start investigating the election fraud here in Nevada,” Marchant said Monday. “And guess who showed up at my suite? Juan O Savin.”
Savin is the alias for an anonymous QAnon influencer and author who until this weekend never showed his face in public and was best known because some QAnon followers believed he was JFK Jr. in disguise.
On Halloween, the second National Conservatism conference, or NatCon II, will kick off in Orlando, Florida. It is hard to know quite what to make of the lineup for the three-day fest, which boasts a few household names (Senators Josh Hawley and Marco Rubio are both keynote speakers), but also features conspiracist Jack Posobiec of Pizzagate fame. One through line, with a few exceptions, is support for Donald Trump. But the animating ideas come less from the ex-president than from a disparate group of formerly obscure academics.
Media coverage of the Trump phenomenon typically begins and ends with the base—the coal miner at the Midwestern diner, or the MAGA rally crowd. We don’t talk much about the professors.
Since 2016, an array of little-known conservative intellectuals and think tank sorts have emerged as powerful voices in Trump’s Republican Party. Zealous opposition to immigration and so-called woke culture stoked their political ambition. They lent a veneer of much-needed respectability to the Trump administration. And now, despite some genuine theoretical differences, the group is coalescing around an illiberal political project—not just espousing typical conservative policy preferences, but standing against liberal, constitutional democracy in the traditional, nonpartisan sense. Some of the most prominent intellectual voices on the right are openly consolidating around the notion that America needs a radical political transformation, away from rule by and for “We the People” and toward something more top-down and monolithic. At its essence, NatCon II is an opportunity for the big names in this movement to offer a dressed-up, sublimating version of Trumpism.