The recent white nationalist march in Charlottesville, VA has been attributed to a group of anti-Trump Republicans. The group is called “Unite the Right” and they’re led by Richard Spencer who advocates for a white ethno-state in America. They were originally formed as an answer to Trump’s lack of condemnation against the alt-right. The call was answered and all sorts of white nationalists flocked to the cause. The rally was a disaster and ended in tragedy when one of their own drove his car into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing one woman and injuring 19 others.
The alt-right movement is growing exponentially. As such, Republicans are growing fearful that they’ll lose their influence in American politics. This isn’t the first time they’ve used Trump to advance their agenda. The last Republican president, George W. Bush, was also used by the alt-right to further their “Patriot” movement. The aftermath of that situation created a large number of conspiracy theories which are still prevalent today.
The biggest one is 9/11 trutherism. Without Bush, Alex Jones would be nothing more than another conservative radio host. Now, he’s the king of all conspiracy theories.
Jones was once a member of the GOP but left after the party betrayed him on his drug legalization agenda. He now runs InfoWars, one of Trump’s biggest sources of misinformation. According to Jones, 9/11 was an inside job and the Oklahoma City bombing was also a false flag attack. Neither one is true but InfoWars has found a way to weave them together with other conspiracies like lizard people and anti-semitism in order to keep their viewership entertained. It seems simple enough until you realize that the website is one of Trump’s primary sources for information.
Jones was one of the biggest supporters for his candidacy and attended several rallies in order to spread awareness. He even interviewed Trump o
n his show, something Alex Jones claims has never been done by another conservative pundit. This granted him more notoriety among conspiracy theorists, especially since some believed that Trump was part of the patriot movement. While he’s recently backpedaled on his support for him, Jones still maintains contact with many people in the administration.
This type of relationship between Republicans and conspiracy theorists isn’t new either. During Obama’s presidency, Glenn Beck used to appear on Fox News every night trying to convince his viewers that Obama was not only a Muslim but also an undercover communist. It wasn’t uncommon for Beck to call him things like “racist” and “terrorist”. His show was extremely popular among Republicans but when he began losing favor with most of them, he too started to attack the GOP.
He spent most of his time spreading misinformation through his website The Blaze and calling players like Paul Ryan RINOs. Beck also launched an online channel called GBTV and gave shows to other conspiracy theorists like Gavin McInness who thinks that white men are superior and women shouldn’t be allowed to vote. While he’s toned down on his rhetoric, many of these people continue their attacks on the party.
This all goes back to Richard Spencer who has been a longtime ally of Jones and more recently, McInness. It all began when he was involved in Ron Paul’s 2008 presidential run and become one of his most vocal supporters online. He then went on to support Pat Buchanan alongside Jared Taylor, another alt-right leader who he currently works with in his organization. While Buchanan would later support Donald Trump’s candidacy, Taylor didn’t think that he was the right candidate and endorsed Ted Cruz instead.
This wasn’t a problem for Spencer who continued to use both of them in order to further his agenda. In 2015, he created a white nationalist political party called the National Policy Institute and named Taylor as one of its directors. The alt-right leader also gave a speech which was heavily promoted by people like Alex Jones through InfoWars. They thought that he would be the perfect candidate for their movement but when he lost the GOP nomination to Donald Trump, they immediately joined his campaign in order to help him win.