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Texas GOP Candidate Mayra Flores Remains Deafeningly Silent as Party Embraces Deadly White Nationalist Conspiracies

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Even an anti-immigrant hate group seems wary about being publicly associated with dangerous “invasion” and great replacement conspiracy theories cited as an inspiration in multiple deadly terrorist attacks, as The Hill’s Rafael Bernal has highlighted. So what’s Texas GOP candidate Mayra Flores’ excuse for remaining silent when her friends in the House have used this same violent and conspiratorial rhetoric?

The Hill noted an exchange during a House hearing this month, when Jessica Vaughan, a staffer with the anti-immigrant hate group Center for Immigration Studies, “vehemently denied” using antisemitic “invasion” rhetoric linked to numerous mass murders. That was a lie, and we have the receipts to prove it. She’s not the only anti-immigrant voice to publicly disavow this rhetoric. NumbersUSA, another anti-immigration group founded as part of the John Tanton network, also claimed that “we don’t use” this language despite promoting a documentary titled “America, Invaded” this past February. 

When anti-immigrant groups founded by a eugenicist like John Tanton are lying about their record left and right, it’s a pretty big indication that the rhetoric adopted by Republicans is reprehensible. Yet Flores has not only failed to condemn vile rhetoric from fellow Republicans, she’s eagerly embraced an endorsement from Speaker Mike Johnson, who has gone further than most of his colleagues in elevating this dangerous rhetoric that has emerged from the white nationalist fringes. “I am proud to have the endorsement of proven conservative champion Speaker Mike Johnson in our race for Congress,” Flores tweeted.

Flores has also remained silent as indicted former President Donald Trump has dehumanized immigrants as “animals” and “not people,” minimized the deadly Charlottesville rally where white supremacists chanted “Jews will not replace us” and later murdered Heather Heyer as “peanuts,” and as the governor of her state, Greg Abbott, has called for shooting migrants at the border.

“The fact that the Republican Party has fully embraced the dangerous rhetoric is something that we cannot afford to ignore,” America’s Voice Senior Research Director Zachary Mueller said. “Elected leaders are giving the invasion conspiracy legitimacy and normalization that is exponentially increasing the threat to public safety from white nationalist and antisemitic political violence.” For Tanton network groups, being publicly associated with this rhetoric appears to be a bridge too far. Sadly, that doesn’t appear to be the case for Flores.