Twitter torches Idaho's Republican lieutenant governor for kanoodling with White supremacists
Idaho's Republican Lieutenant Governor Janice McGeachin has defended her virtual speech at an event that was organized by White supremacist conspiracy theorist Nick Fuentes.
McGeachin, whose primary challenge to incumbent GOP Governor Brad Little earned the endorsement of former President Donald Trump, has been facing calls for her resignation from members of both political parties over her participation in Fuentes' gathering.
“I thank you all for your efforts, I thank you for joining our efforts, and together we will fight to make Idaho great again,” she said in a recorded address to the America First Political Action Conference, which was held in Orlando, Florida on February 27th.
McGeachin also called upon “freedom fighters all over this country that are willing to stand up and fight…. Even when that means fighting among our own ranks, because too many Republicans don’t exhibit the courage today.”
McGeachin shut down an interview with KTVB7 on Tuesday when Boise reporter Brian Holmes grilled her on why she accepted Fuentes' invitation. She denied having any knowledge about Fuentes and insisted that she was merely trying to stand up for conservative principles.
But in a conversation with Jack Holmes of Valiant News that was released on Thursday, McGeachin doubled down on her justifications for coddling perpetrators of hate and admitted that she was fully aware of who her audience was, signaling a reversal from her remarks two days earlier.
"I was invited to present a video of my commitment to the 'Idaho First' policies and my vision for the state of Idaho and for America to these – to thousands of young conservatives," said McGeachin. "I was invited by Michelle Malkin."
Malkin is a conservative political commentator for Newsmax TV, a right-wing propaganda outlet on cable television. She tweeted a photograph at AFPAC with Fuentes and United States Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia), who along with Congressman Paul Gosar (R-Arizona) was a guest of honor.
On Twitter Michelle Malkin posted this photo of herself with Marjorie Taylor Greene and Nick Fuentes.pic.twitter.com/IgTQ9iDuDB— Eyes on the Right (@Eyes on the Right) 1645886913
"So yes, I did know who I was talking to, who had invited me to speak at that conference, and so I don't think, you know, if you know who Michelle Malkin is, she's a [unintelligible] woman. Her family immigrated from The Philippines and she happens to be married to a Jewish man," McGeachin continued, implying that Malkin's husband's religion justifies their alignment with Fuentes.
"It's just the double-speak that the illiberal left likes to talk – and it doesn't – we're not gonna back off," McGeachin added before suggesting that she would show face at future bigot fests. "I'm not going to back off from the opportunity to talk to other conservatives across the country about America First policies."
Watch below via Right Wing Watch:
Idaho Lt. Gov. Janice McGeachin now says, "Yes, I did know who I was talking to" when she addressed the white nationalist AFPAC conference and she stands by it: "I'm not going to back off from the opportunity to talk to other conservatives ... about America First policies."pic.twitter.com/EcbL4onfLC— Right Wing Watch (@Right Wing Watch) 1647611041
CNN Editor-at-Large Chris Cillizza noted on Thursday that McGeachin's excuses do not add up:
Under the BEST-case scenario for her, this is what happened:
1. She agreed to record a video for an event organized by a high-profile White nationalist.
2. She did zero due diligence -- and by that I mean going to Google and typing in the name 'Nick Fuentes.'
3. She delivered the speech and, after it created controversy, decided to look him up.
4. When pressed on why she didn't know who she was speaking to, McGeachin said that she can't be held responsible for who she associates with.
On Friday, a spokesperson for the Idaho Democratic Party told The Daily Beast that "when someone shows you who they are, believe them. Janice McGeachin’s support of the extreme right and white nationalists is blatantly clear, and it has been for years. What I’m still not clear on is when, if ever, leaders of the Idaho Republican Party will say ‘enough is enough’ and call on her to resign.”
Meanwhile, the Twitterverse made it abundantly clear that the GOP and McGeachin's coziness with the alt-right will forever define them. After all, the nationalist "America First" dogma was first adopted and very publicly touted by the Ku Klux Klan.
At present, they have full control of the conservative movement. They are the only form of modern conservatism with any real sway. This is the base, metastasizing after decades of right-wing media saturation.— Cooper Dog (@Cooper Dog) 1647622416
Thank you for confirming @JaniceMcGeachin that there is a direct correlation between today's idea of conservatism and white ideology. In other words governor you and conservatives really do support racism. Got it, thank you for clarifying!— \ud83d\udda4Carly Lehwald (@\ud83d\udda4Carly Lehwald) 1647612237
Did someone say America First?pic.twitter.com/V9e3G9FU1v— Chocolate Giddyup (@Chocolate Giddyup) 1647611164
At least she acknowledged white nationalism is a conservative policy.— My Neighbor Turturro (@My Neighbor Turturro) 1647614486
So she's knowingly attempting to recruit white nationalists and admits it, is that what I am hearing?— Cindy Carpenter (@Cindy Carpenter) 1647612729
So she's doubling down on her being a White Supremacist.\n\nThat's going to get her a lot of Republican votes.— Dave the guy from Rhode Island (@Dave the guy from Rhode Island) 1647613230
We all know what "America First" is right wing code for:pic.twitter.com/pVSwasna4p— Mary Berry #StandWithUkraine (@Mary Berry #StandWithUkraine) 1647612687
Every time I see "America First" mentioned.pic.twitter.com/X20GbBn67d— Stephen Kiskamp (@Stephen Kiskamp) 1647612449
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