An anti-Muslim extremist who once said she didn’t care about the mass murder of Muslims won a Republican congressional primary election in Florida on Tuesday, and received a late-night congratulations from the president.
Laura Loomer, a 27-year-old far-right operative whose bigotry is so vile she’s been kicked off multiple social media platforms, beat out five opponents to capture the GOP nomination for Congress in Florida’s 21st District.
The district includes President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, and the president took time Tuesday night to send Loomer some words of encouragement.
“Great going Laura,” he tweeted a little before midnight. “You have a great chance against a Pelosi puppet!”
Loomer will face Democratic incumbent Rep. Lois Frankel in the general election in November in a race Loomer is widely expected to lose. Frankel won the heavily Democratic district by 30 percentage points in 2018.
But Loomer’s primary win underscores the degree to which explicit anti-Muslim bigotry isn’t just tolerated in the GOP, but rewarded.
It’s hard to overstate her hatred for Muslims. Loomer — whose long extremist resumé includes stints as a writer and correspondent at far-right operations including The Rebel, Project Veritas and InfoWars — has called Muslims “savages” and described herself as a “#ProudIslamophobe.”
She’s stated that she doesn’t want “another Muslim entering this country EVER AGAIN!”
Last year she called on her 112,000 Instagram followers (she’s since been kicked off the platform) to “rise up” against Muslim Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), whom she falsely accused of being a terrorist who was “pushing for another 9/11.”
“Islam is a cancer on humanity and Muslims should not be allowed to seek positions of political office in this country,” Loomer wrote in another Instagram post about Omar.
The next month on Telegram, Loomer demonstrated her utter disregard for Muslim lives.
Laura Loomer uses social media (Telegram) to make it clear that she cares more about social media than she does the 51 people brutally massacred by a white nationalist terrorist who sounded a lot like Laura Loomer on social media. pic.twitter.com/sZmMdYR8QF
— Luke O'Brien (@lukeobrien) May 17, 2019
“I 👏 DON’T 👏 CARE 👏 ABOUT 👏 CHRISTCHURCH,” Loomer wrote in another Telegram post.
Loomer, according to a report from Right Wing Watch, also works closely with a Florida-based organization called United West, which is listed by the Southern Poverty Law Center as an anti-Muslim hate group.
Loomer, who is Jewish, also has frequented white nationalist circles and once posed for a photograph with fascist figurehead Richard Spencer.
As noted by Right Wing Watch, the white nationalist website VDare supported her candidacy for Congress.
Loomer’s bigotry has earned her bans from many tech platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, PayPal, GoFundMe, Venmo, Uber, Lyft, and Uber Eats.
But it hasn’t stopped her from gaining support of those in the MAGAverse. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), one of Trump’s biggest supporters in Congress, endorsed Loomer. So did Rep. Paul Gosar and Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro.
At the Conservative Political Action Conference earlier this year, HuffPost spotted Loomer — who was not allowed inside the event itself — talking with white supremacist Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa).
“Text me,” King, who lost his GOP primary this year, could be heard saying to Loomer.
Walked past white supremacist congressman Steve King talking to anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Laura Lo*mer at CPAC. Didn’t hear what they were talking about, but they exchanged numbers and at the end King said “text me.” pic.twitter.com/pV7F4b7Me5
— Christopher Mathias (@letsgomathias) February 27, 2020
Loomer raised over $1 million for her congressional campaign, according to The Daily Beast. She hired Karen Giorno to lead her campaign. Giorno worked as an adviser to Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Loomer earned 42% of the vote in Tuesday’s crowded primary field.
She celebrated her victory at a party alongside prominent far-right extremists, according to the Palm Beach Post. Among the party guests were longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone, convicted last year of witness tampering and lying to Congress; disgraced former Breitbart columnist Milo Yiannopoulos; and Gavin McInnes, the founder of the neo-fascist street gang the Proud Boys.
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