According to a report from Vice News' Tess Owens, the love affair between the alt-right and Donald Trump is on the rocks because the president's policies and actions are not playing out in the way that the rightwing extremists had hoped.
Noting that the president didn't get much in the way of rave reviews for his July Fourth extravaganza -- which included him mangling history while praising the Continental Army for reclaiming the nation's airports from the British -- Owens points out that commenters on forums hosting alt-right rabble-rousing appear to have given up on Trump.
"Online forums home to the alt-right, such as 4chan and 8chan, were filled with chatter about Disney’s decision to cast a black actress as Ariel in the upcoming live-action version of 'The Little Mermaid," she wrote, before observing, "Discussions around 'Salute to America' decidedly muted."
According to her report, "Extremism experts say their apparent lack of interest in Trump is partly because the heyday of the 'alt-right' as a coordinated bloc is over — and partly because they feel betrayed by Trump, who, by operating in the political mainstream, is now tainted by the very swamp he promised to drain. Many also feel like he has failed to deliver on the sweeping immigration enforcement he promised during the campaign."
In an interview, University of Alabama professor George Hawley said the relationship between the white nationalists may be damaged beyond repair.
“Whenever I talk about the alt-right at this point, I do so in the past tense,” he explained. "For the most part, as far as I can tell, there’s no enthusiasm within the extreme right for President Trump — which isn’t to say they’re going to become Democrats. The massive trolling operation we saw in 2016 I think is unlikely to be repeated.”
According to Patrick Casey, the leader of the American Identity Movement, Trump has failed to fulfill his "MAGA" promises.
"Our president squandered an enormous opportunity,” Casey lamented while adding that he hopes the 2024 election will offer a candidate more in line with his views such as Fox News' Tucker Carlson.
Owens notes that, "Casey and about 20 members of his group held their own flash rally over the weekend in Alexandria, Virginia. In the past, their members wore MAGA hats at their events. But this time, there were no trademark red caps in sight."
She added, "Many of Trump’s former fans, like Richard Spencer, now ridicule the president by tweeting his name alongside Israeli and American flag emojis. Vocal anti-semites like former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke, who 'endorsed' Trump in 2016, has completely turned his back on the president," before pointing out that some alt-righters are now throwing their support behind Democratic lawmaker Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI) "due to her non-interventionist policies," although she has rejected their support.
“Trump was a candidate they were genuinely enthused about,” Alabama's Hawley added. “They weren’t as excited about Romney or McCain. I think we’re headed to a situation much like the previous status quo, of the extreme right being more or less indifferent when it comes to their preferences of Republicans and Democrats.”
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