Something truly extraordinary happened at Tuesday’s House Oversight Committee hearing, when Republican chairman James Comer had a fit over an entirely factual tweet sent by the committee’s Democratic members earlier in the day. That tweet linked to a report by an immigrant rights advocacy group showing how several of the committee’s GOP members have amplified white supremacist conspiracy theory.
That’s just a fact—Comer himself had done it. “They want more people to roll into the United States,” he told Fox & Friends just this past December, America’s Voice said. “They believe this is part of their social equality campaign to fundamentally change America.” That’s replacement conspiracy theory, folks. But not only is it a fact that elected Republicans have boosted these racist theories, they did it during this very hearing.
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One of them was Colorado’s Lauren Boebert, who had earlier that day joined Comer in pretending to be upset about Democratic members’ tweet. “Shame on Oversight Dems for claiming this hearing is intended to, ‘amplify white nationalist conspiracy theories,’” she tweeted mid-morning on Tuesday. But Boebert then proceeded to—you guessed it—amplify white nationalist conspiracy theory just a while later.
“There truth is that there is an invasion happening at our southern border,” Boebert said during the hearing, echoing the racist screeds of white supremacists like the El Paso mass shooter. The manifesto he wrote before driving to a Walmart to murder Mexicans had “warned of a ‘Hispanic invasion’ of Texas,” the Associated Press noted on Wednesday.
Boebert also echoed Jim Jordan’s lie from Monday’s Judiciary Committee hearing that the Biden administration was intentionally sparking the so-called border crisis claimed by Republicans. President Biden “invoked amnesty,” Boebert falsely claimed Tuesday. That’s certainly some news to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients and many other undocumented families still fighting for their permanent place in this country.
America’s Voice noted that two other Oversight Republicans, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar, also amplified this racist bullcrap. Both were restored to committee by Speaker-For-Now Kevin McCarthy, after being stripped of assignments in the previous congress for endorsing political violence.
Just to show you how seriously they took their time-outs, both attended the New York Young Republicans Club’s December gala, where guests applauded “members of an Austrian political party founded by World War II-era German Nazi party members,” Hatewatch reported. Greene further claimed at the event that if she and white nationalist Steve Bannon had been in charge of Jan. 6, the insurrectionists would’ve won. Attendees applauded that, too, Hatewatch said.
But Comer, who has lately been obsessed with Hunter Biden’s genitalia, said it was Democratic members who were violating “decorum” through their entirely factual tweet, calling it “very disturbing” after reading it aloud, Roll Call said. Interesting how Republicans are just now finding issues with tweets, after having to, on occasion, pretend they’d never even heard of this Twitter thing when their president would tell U.S. citizens to go back to where they came from.
The rest of Tuesday’s hearing played out a lot like Monday’s Judiciary hearing, in that Republicans continued to push the lie that the fentanyl crisis is tied to migrants. Ranking Democrat Jamie Raskin stated the fact that the vast majority of fentanyl seized by border officers is trafficked by U.S. citizens and permanent residents at ports of entry, “not from migrants traveling across the border on foot,” The Center Square reported. President Biden, during his State of the Union address that day, announced further measures by his administration to tackle the fentanyl crisis. Republicans should’ve jumped to their feet to applaud that, but it might get in the way of their demonizing.
To top it all off, during Tuesday’s hearing, Comer had the gall to ask Raskin to take down the tweet. Raskin ultimately refused—good for him. America’s Voice said that the ranking Democrat “responded that he would only do so if Oversight Republicans formally renounced the ‘Great Replacement Theory,’ which they are unwilling to do.”
”There are members on this committee who have indulged in that kind of rhetoric,” Raskin said, “but if they’re willing to say now that they renounce the great replacement theory, and don’t want to be associated with that, then I’m very happy to say we will withdraw that tweet and you never see a tweet like that again.” But Boebert not only spewed her invasion rhetoric during the hearing, she tweeted a clip of it on her official government account. This is who they are.
Vanessa Cardenas, America’s Voice executive director, said, “GOP hypocrisy was on full display” Tuesday. “On the one hand, they complain about decorum and on the other hand, their members are the loudest amplifiers of ‘invasion’ and ‘Great Replacement Theory’ and ‘open borders’ language—which stirs anger and hate. They can try to pretend otherwise and distract with their on-camera outrage, but the mountain of evidence cannot be swept under the rug. GOP members are the worst offenders when it comes to parroting white nationalist tropes.”
Sarah Longwell is a longtime Republican strategist and prominent never-Trumper. Her podcast, The Focus Group, is a peek at the thousands of hours of focus groups she has conducted all across the country. Sarah comes on to give her thoughts about the state of the current Republican Party and why its future remains bleak.
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