At the Extremes: The 2020 Election and American Extremism, Part 7

  • November 12, 2020
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In the weeks leading up to and after the 2020 presidential election, the ADL (Anti-Defamation League) Center on Extremism (COE) in conjunction with ADL’s Center for Technology and Society has been releasing a series of news briefs on topics of concern regarding the role extremists and extremism more broadly are playing in our current political environment.

Here's Part 7:

Extremists Plan to Attend “Million MAGA March” in Washington, D.C.

Who/What: Extremists plan to show up at “Million MAGA March” and “Stop the Steal” events nationwide.

Why it Matters: Some of these extremists are known for inciting violence; their presence may inspire counter-protesters to show up as opposition.

Organizers of Saturday’s “Million MAGA March” or “March on DC” are promoting the event as a way to protest “voter fraud,” to “show support for our President” and “demand a free and fair election.” Some extremists, however, see this as an opportunity to capitalize on – or even magnify – the chaos and uncertainty that has defined the 2020 presidential election.

Scheduled for Saturday, November 14, 2020, the march will begin at the U.S. Supreme Court and wind its way past various Washington, D.C. landmarks. The end point of the march appears to be up in the air.

 

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Various online organizers have attracted a fair amount of attention, often using the hashtag #StoptheSteal alongside “Million MAGA March.” As of November 10, there at least 24 Facebook events using one or both terms, the largest of which has attracted 1,500 “interested” followers.

 

While these are not extremist events, the Center on Extremism is tracking several extremist groups and individuals that have announced plans to attend the marches to protest Democrats’ alleged voter fraud. The events have gained considerable traction in extremist circles on social media, especially on Parler, but also on Telegram, Twitter and Facebook.

 

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Extremists expected to attend the D.C. Event:

  • Proud Boys chairman Enrique Tarrio announced on Telegram that the group will attend the D.C. event, and members are sharing a related flier widely across social media platforms, including Telegram.
  • Brien James, leader of right-wing extremist group American Guard, disclosed his plans to attend via Telegram. James is also a member of the Proud Boys and did not indicate which group he will be representing.
  • Conspiracy-addled website InfoWars announced it will lead a cross-country caravan to the march, starting in Austin, Texas. Alex Jones wrote, “[Owen] Shroyer leads the attack. The peaceful attack.”
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  • Nick Fuentes tweeted that he will attend alongside local members of the white supremacist “America First” Groyper Army, which he leads.
  • Former American Identity Movement leader Patrick Casey, also a prominent groyper, announced on a November 9 livestream that he plans to be at the march. He will be joined by fellow groyper Michael Sisco.
  • Neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, one of the organizers of the 2017 Charlottesville, Virginia “Unite the Right” rally, has not mentioned the D.C. event specifically, but is promoting protests generally on his website, The Daily Stormer, writing: “If you have to drive across country, do it. Just be there. Rent a van and load it up with your people. This is the most important thing of our lives.”
  • Vincent James Foxx of the Red Elephants, known for his conspiracy theories, antisemitic beliefs and white supremacist mantras, has promoted the event on Parler.
  • Oath Keepers issued a call for volunteers to attend the event alongside their leader, Stewart Rhodes, according to a post on mymilitia.com. The anti-government extremist group is seeking “volunteers” including “our most experienced LEO and military combat veterans…to help keep patriots safe…” The announcement notes Oath Keepers’ readiness to respond to a “’Benghazi’ style assault on the White House by communist terrorists, in conjunction with stand-down orders by traitor generals.”

Extremists at Nationwide #StoptheSteal Rallies

Even as some are focused on the upcoming “Million MAGA March,” StoptheSteal rallies continue in state capitals across the country. Although the events continue to be overwhelmingly mainstream, extremists have shown up at several, and we expect that to continue through the weekend.

  • Nick  Fuentes, leader of the white supremacist “America First” groypers, spoke on November 11, 2020 at a lightly attended “Stop the Steal” rally at the state capitol in Lansing, Michigan. During his livestreamed remarks, he made a reference to the Synagogue of Satan, a phrase used to negatively refer to Jews. “We have the president of the United States standing up to the banks, standing up to the mainstream media, standing up the big tax and the Democrats and the Synagogue of Satan,” Fuentes said. “They want to see our kids raped and brainwashed. And they think it's funny. And when have we ever had a president like that? And will we ever get a president like that again?”
  • InfoWars announced plans on Parler to caravan through Austin, Houston, Tallahassee, Baton Rouge, Atlanta, Raleigh and Richmond on the way to Washington, D.C. In Austin, InfoWars correspondent Owen Shroyer spoke about the election as a “total rig job” against President Trump and called it “the final level” in Democrats’ efforts to “fake our election results.”

 

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We are basing our assessment of potential future right-wing extremist activity in part on the fact that various individuals and groups showed up at protests and rallies following the announcement that Joe Biden had won the presidential election. Right-wing extremists appear to be invested in the outcome of this election; they also have an insatiable appetite for chaos.

Examples of extremists at StoptheSteal rallies November 7-8, 2020:

  • The white supremacist groypers, anti-government extremist Three Percenters and far-right, violence-prone Proud Boys showed up in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
  • Proud Boys were also on the ground at StopTheSteal rallies in St Paul, Minnesota; Salem, Oregon; Carson City, Nevada; and Sacramento, California.
  • In Phoenix, Arizona, Proud Boys were joined by Australian white supremacist Philip Hedley and Tim Gionet (Baked Alaska). Hedley’s antisemitic comments were captured on YouTube: “We will not fall for the lies of the Jews this time. This time, we know our war is with them.”
  • In Salem, Oregon, members of the Proud Boys pepper sprayed counter-protesters and shoved a photographer.
  • Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Austin, Texas, saw gatherings of Groypers.

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