Read new America’s Voice backgrounder HERE
Washington, DC – Republicans have used their narrow majority in the House to convene a series of congressional hearings and photo ops at the border that amplify white nationalist conspiracy theories and other pernicious nativist disinformation. Ahead of the latest iteration – today’s GOP House Judiciary Committee field hearing in Yuma – a new backgrounder from America’s Voice provides updated research on Republican witnesses and their backgrounds and a reminder of the larger context and consequences of the GOP’s preference for relentless and dangerous anti-immigrant political attacks instead of a serious discussion on solutions.
According to Zachary Mueller, Political Director of America’s Voice: “These ongoing Republican hearings are not just forums for political attack lines and pernicious disinformation, but are also actively helping to mainstream white nationalist messages and messengers who elevate dangerous conspiracies.”
Read the research backgrounder “Republicans Provide a Platform for Hate, Conspiracies, and White Nationalism with Choice of Committee Hearing Witnesses” and see below for key excerpts:
- Several of the witnesses Republicans have already invited to testify at these hearings have described migrants seeking asylum and safety as an “invasion,” which refers to the white nationalist great replacement conspiracy theory and echoes the racist conspiracy tied to multiple terrorist attacks.
- Three of their witnesses have worked with a hate group and two are part of far-right sheriffs’ organization with close ties to the Oath Keepers, white supremacists, and election denialism. Republicans are providing a platform and their stamp of approval for hate and dangerous conspiracies by inviting these individuals to participate in these hearings.
- The witnesses set to testify in the House Judiciary Committee field hearing in Yuma scheduled for today (Thursday February 23) are but the latest example of this concerning pattern.
- Jonathan Lines, a Yuma County Supervisor and the former chairman of the Arizona Republican Party, has repeatedly described migrants seeking asylum and safety as an “invasion.”
- Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot is a part of the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association (CSPOA), a far-right organization with ties to white supremacists, the Oath Keepers, and Wilmot was personally active in their election denial activity.
- In all three of the prior House Committee hearings ostensibly about the border, Republican members have amplified the white nationalist great replacement conspiracy theory, including the prior House Judiciary hearing. When Republicans were confronted in the House Oversight Committee with the fact that some of their members were using the hearings to amplify the great replacement theory by Ranking Member Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) Republican leadership pointedly refused to condemn the racist conspiracy theory. “The MAGA forces in the GOP have chosen to abandon the strong pro-immigration stance of Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan and instead spread fear about a foreign invasion, dangerous paranoia about the racist and antisemitic ‘Great Replacement’ mythology and disinformation about fentanyl,” said Raskin.
- Unfortunately, Republicans are setting themselves up to continue this disturbing pattern. The announcement from the House Homeland Security Committee that there will be a hearing next week marks the fifth House Committee hearing in five weeks, ostensibly about the border. Chairman Rep. Mark Green has amplified the white nationalist great replacement conspiracy theory, as have most of the Republican members on the committee. It is likely they will follow their colleagues and invite witnesses connected to hate and extremism, while the members use the hearing to further amplify the deadly racist conspiracies.