The America First movement has become embroiled in a bitter feud after its former treasurer got a girlfriend—a faux pas with the movement’s celibate leader.
A newly nominated Republican congressional candidate in Ohio says he’s not a QAnon guy. There’s just one problem: The candidate, J.R. Majewski, was repeatedly filmed talking about Q on web shows, spray-painting QAnon logos onto his lawn, and wearing QAnon merchandise.
“This guy has more QAnon merchandise than basically any QAnon person I’ve ever talked to,” says Fever Dreams co-host Will Sommer, who found videos of Majewski wearing an extensive Q-themed wardrobe.
This week on Fever Dreams, we dive deep into the far right’s livestreamed publicity woes, from Majewski’s QAnon comments, to a nasty fight in the white nationalist “America First” movement. The movement, which counts Congress members Paul Gosar and Marjorie Taylor Greene as fans, is undergoing turmoil after its treasurer got a girlfriend and stopped living in the basement of leader Nick Fuentes. That was a problem for Fuentes, who describes himself as an incel (that’s “involuntarily celibate”) and beseeches his young, male fanbase not to have sex. Now the movement’s former treasurer is calling the movement a cult.
The movement is so grounded in being “racist and ridiculous in public that it ruins people’s lives,” says Fever Dreams co-host Kelly Weill. “You can’t go and get a normal job after that. So they turn further and further into this movement, which really does function almost like a cult.”
While the America First movement struggles with girl problems, Trump fans on the southern border are facing strange new allegations of their own. A recent New York Times report details a QAnon-fueled border vigilante movement that has MAGA types bribing migrant children with hamburgers and asking them for information about their families. It’s not the first group of wingnuts to set its eyes on the southern border. Sommer and Weill revisit the history of Q-inspired vigilante groups like “Veterans On Patrol” that have previously peddled wild theories, like falsely claiming that migrant children were being smuggled across the border so that their blood could be mixed into cement.
Meanwhile, in other corners of the far right, a curious blend of Silicon Valley reactionaries and disaffected downtown Manhattan types are coalescing into a new movement. James Pogue, a contributing editor at Harper’s, joins us to discuss his recent Vanity Fair article on the New Right movement.
“On its basic level, the New Right is an insurgent attempt to reshape the Republican party in a more nationalist, deeply conservative direction, kind of like what you would see with Marine Le Pen in France,” Pogue says.
Among the mix are Peter Thiel-backed political candidates and bloggers who openly long for monarchy. Pogue notes that the movement is an unusual amalgam of anti-liberal types, “a very strange and kind of febrile and diffuse movement, but it’s all a sort of critique of the direction of liberal society over the last 400 years.”
Finally, a fringe candidate in Georgia’s GOP gubernatorial primary is trying to stand out from the pack with an unusual campaign pledge: tearing down a granite monument that she claims is a New World Order statue. Kandiss Taylor, a third-place contender for the GOP nomination, says she’ll remove the Georgia Guidestones, a Stonehenge-like statue in the countryside.
Not even the residents in rural Georgia are on board, Sommer reports, due to local loyalty to the Guidestones, which are both a popular roadside attraction and a testament to the area’s granite industry
“I asked the mayor of Elberton,” where the Guidestones are located, Sommer said. “He said ‘Maybe she should focus on the wonders of Elberton granite, rather than watching so many YouTube videos.’