Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.
Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler has been trying to do damage control after she proudly posed for a selfie with a known white supremacist last week. However, the damning photo with a former Ku Klux Klan leader has instead magnified attention to her affiliation with and welcomed support from people who have not only made unabashedly racist comments but also defended those hateful sentiments.
Loeffler is running for re-election against the Rev. Raphael Warnock — a Black man — in a runoff scheduled for early next month. Her campaign said she was unaware that the infamous selfie she took last week was with Chester Doles, who pleaded guilty to a hate crime in 1993 for brutally beating a Black man in Maryland because he was riding in a vehicle with a white woman. The Baltimore Sun reported at the time that “Doles’ agreement to testify in the beating case angered fellow Klansmen, including Robert Tweed, who calls himself the imperial wizard for the Territorial Klans of America.”
But a quick look at who else Loeffler has accepted support from and aligned herself and her campaign with — including and especially Donald Trump — inserts doubt in the narrative that she was unaware of Doles and his racist, hateful exploits.
A Twitter thread posted by a progressive Jewish grassroots movement detailed “Loeffler’s Far-Right Fans” and described Doles as being “just the tip of the iceberg of the extremists backing Loeffler.”
Specifically, the IfNotNow movement tweeted about Marjorie Taylor Greene, a QAnon conspiracy theorist who has offered up a host of racist statements offensive to Blacks, Jews and Muslims alike.
Green, who recently won her election (!!) to represent Georgia in the U.S. House of Representatives, has not only referred to Black people as “slaves to the Democratic party” but she also said she was “proud” of Confederate monuments. Not to be outdone, Green also suggested that Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar and Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib — the first two Muslim women elected to their respective offices — were waging “an Islamic invasion into our government offices right now.”
Further, Greene denounced Black Lives Matter activists as “idiots” and grouped them together with the KKK and neo-Nazis members who marched at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Greene also ejected commentary that there are racial disparities in the United States or that skin color affects the “quality” of one’s life. “Guess what? Slavery is over,” she said. “Black people have equal rights.”
It was in that context that Loeffler readily accepted Green’s endorsement.
“I’m thrilled to know I’ve got a strong, conservative champion that’s going to be fighting right alongside with me,” Loeffler dog-whistled loudly in October.
But wait, there’s more.
Loeffler has aligned herself with and promoted the racist sentiments of Jack Posobiec, a host for the far-right One America News Network and notorious alt-right leader who has had sympathetic words for people like Richard Spencer. The Southern Poverty Law Center has said that “Posobiec’s extensive ties to white supremacists should serve as a wake-up call for anyone who hasn’t made the connection between Trump’s MAGA movement and hate.”
In particular, Loeffler was willingly interviewed by Posobiec and then later tweeted the video, claiming she “had to call out the BLM political organization — and why the woke mob is trying to cancel me.”
But that’s lightwork compared to what Posobiec is really known for: hardcore anti-Semitism, something that is also Green’s apparent bailiwick.
In addition to Loeffler’s opponent Warnock, all of the above is likely highly offensive to Jon Ossoff, the Democrat running in Georgia’s other Senate run-off election. Ossoff, who is facing incumbent Republican Sen. David Perdue, is Jewish.
It is also tantamount to confirmation of lingering suspicions that Loeffler is a white supremacist.
She’s been publicly dog-whistling up a storm for months now, including referring to the Black Lives Matter movement as “fascists.” She even pulled out the “racist bone” card during a debate.
Most recently, Loeffler aired a TV ad falsely claiming: “Raphael Warnock called police thugs and gangsters. Hosted a rally for communist dictator Fidel Castro. And praised Marxism in speeches and writings.”
Her objective is clear: to stoke the flames of racism that are simmering in a state with a rich anti-Black history in an attempt to appeal to more voters at any cost.
Early voting in Georgia Senate runoff elections began Monday.
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