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Politics GOP struggles to rein in nativism

01:30  20 april  2021
01:30  20 april  2021 Source:   thehill.com

A GOP congressman said so many Republican voters now believe in the QAnon conspiracy theory it could destroy the party

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Nativism is the political policy of promoting the interests of native inhabitants against those of immigrants, including the support of immigration-restriction measures.

House GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), who has been vocal in her belief that Republicans need to make clear they’ re not the party of white supremacy, also appeared to call out the controversial caucus. “Racism, nativism , and anti-Semitism are evil,” she tweeted. “History teaches we all have an obligation Still, the leaked draft document quickly ignited a firestorm on Friday and could continue to pose headaches for McCarthy, who has struggled to deal with extremist episodes inside his ranks. And some Republicans have privately said they wish McCarthy would more forcefully rein in the fringe

House GOP leaders are struggling to rein in the increasingly open nativism within their conference and attempting to deflect from the controversy by training their ire against Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.).

Kevin McCarthy wearing a suit and tie: GOP struggles to rein in nativism © Greg Nash GOP struggles to rein in nativism

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) issued a tweet stating that the GOP is not the party of "nativist dog whistles," without directly referencing the draft policy platform for a proposed caucus that called for promoting "Anglo-Saxon political traditions" and infrastructure that reflects "European architecture."

Days later, McCarthy is now backing an effort to take action against Waters, the House Financial Services Committee chairwoman, for saying "we've got to get more confrontational" and "we've got to stay on the street and we've got to get more active" about addressing police brutality against Black people.

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McCarthy said that he would "bring action" this week against Waters, whom he accused of "inciting violence in Minneapolis - just as she has incited it in the past."

The Waters remarks were also criticized Monday by the judge in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer who faces murder charges for the killing of George Floyd, whose death set off nationwide demonstrations last summer.

Hennepin County District Judge Peter Cahill ruled that the remarks were not prejudicial, however, ruling against a defense motion for a mistrial. The jury began deliberations in Chauvin's trial on Monday.

McCarthy's announcement about Waters came hours after Greene, one of the leaders of the planned "America First" Caucus, said that she will introduce a resolution to expel Waters from Congress "for her continual incitement of violence."

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One final thought for this article: The GOP is finished. 80+ million Trump supporters will no longer support any GOP candidate from this day forward. We learned last night that the GOP will betray America when it counts, and from this day forward, we denounce the GOP and urge all readers and supporters to join us in that denouncement. Never send donations to the GOP again. Never vote for a GOP candidate ever again, unless their name is “Trump.” Never believe anything a GOP weasel promises in any election speech or campaign ad. There are a few exceptions to the GOP treason

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The indirect distancing from the "America First" caucus platform followed by joining the push against Waters shows how McCarthy is trying to maintain a delicate balancing act to try to avoid outright open warfare in the GOP while attempting to keep the extremist fringe in check.

McCarthy opposed removing Greene from her committee assignments in February in response to her past apparent endorsements of violence against prominent Democrats and embrace of conspiracy theories. He also opposed impeaching former President Trump for inciting the mob that attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6, despite initially stating that Trump "bears responsibility."

It's not yet clear what specific action McCarthy will take against Waters, but he could potentially force a vote on a resolution to strip Waters of her committee assignments or impose censure or expulsion.

McCarthy forced a similar vote last month to remove Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) from the House Intelligence Committee over his past ties to a suspected Chinese spy, which the House rejected mostly along party lines with Democrats unified in opposition.

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Multiple Republicans swiftly condemned the proposed platform for the America First Caucus. Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) described it as "hatefulness," while Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) said that anyone who becomes a member should be stripped of their committee assignments and kicked out of the House GOP conference.

But at least two Republicans indicated some interest in the caucus: Rep. Matt Gaetz (Fla.) - already under fire for allegations of sex trafficking and prostitution - declared he would become a member and Rep. Louie Gohmert (Texas) said he was considering it.

Now, instead of engaging in open warfare amongst themselves over white supremacy, House Republicans are rallying behind holding Waters to account for a string of inflammatory statements, including saying in 2017 that she would "go and take Trump out tonight" and encouraging supporters in 2018 to harass Trump administration officials in public.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) defended Waters on Monday and said she shouldn't apologize.

"Maxine talked about confrontation in the manner of the civil rights movement," Pelosi told reporters in the Capitol. And when asked if she thinks Waters's comments over the weekend incited violence, she said: "No, absolutely not."

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Waters, a senior member of the Congressional Black Caucus, accused Republicans of trying to "send a message" to white supremacists by targeting her.

"Republicans will jump on any word, any line and try to make it fit their message and their cause for denouncing us and denying us, basically calling us violent ... any time they see an opportunity to seize on a word, so they do it and they send a message to all of the white supremacists, the KKK, the Oath Keepers, the [Proud] Boys and all of that, how this is a time for [Republicans] to raise money on [Democrats'] backs," Waters said in an interview with The Grio published Monday.

Waters further denied that she was encouraging violence.

"I talk about confronting the justice system, confronting the policing that's going on, I'm talking about speaking up. I'm talking about legislation. I'm talking about elected officials doing what needs to be done to control their budgets and to pass legislation," Waters said.

Both Greene and Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), another leader of the planned America First Caucus, have since distanced themselves from the policy platform's explicitly nativist language and said they didn't write it.

Greene said that it was a "staff level draft proposal from an outside group that I hadn't read."

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But when asked by The Hill to clarify which outside group authored the proposal, a spokesman for Greene ignored the question and instead pointed to the remarks from Waters.

Waters spoke over the weekend while tensions are high in Minneapolis amid the closing arguments in Chauvin's murder trial.

Two members of the National Guard were injured early Sunday morning in a drive-by shooting when someone fired at a Minnesota National Guard and Minneapolis Police Department team providing neighborhood security.

Additional protests have been fueled in recent days by the death of another Black man, Daunte Wright, at the hands of law enforcement just north of Minneapolis.

Against that racial backdrop, House Democrats are planning votes on bills this week to grant statehood to the District of Columbia - where African Americans make up nearly half the population - and to prevent another travel ban like the one enacted by Trump against several Muslim-majority countries. The House Judiciary Committee also advanced legislation last week to study whether Black Americans should receive reparations for slavery.

Former Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said that the GOP needs to strongly denounce the nativist fringe elements of the party and embrace the idea of America as "the world's giant melting pot."

"Listen, America is a land of immigration. We've been the world's giant melting pot for 250 years. And we ought to celebrate the fact that we are this giant melting pot. And to see some members of Congress go off and start this America First Caucus is - it's the silliest thing I've ever seen. And Republicans need to denounce it," Boehner said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

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usr: 4
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