On Thursday, The Washington Post reported that President Donald Trump praised supporters of the QAnon conspiracy theory in a strategy session with Republican senators over the summer.
"In a White House meeting about keeping the Senate with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Sen. Todd C. Young (R-Ind.) and other aides, a discussion about the state took a wild turn when Trump brought up House candidate Marjorie Taylor Greene’s support of the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory, according to people familiar with the discussion," reported Josh Dawsey, Amy Gardner, and Cleve Wootson Jr.
"'Q-an-uhn,' he said, mispronouncing the name of the group, telling those present that it is made up of people who 'basically believe in good government,'" continued the report. "The room was silent again before Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, leaned forward to say he had never heard it described that way."
The QAnon conspiracy theory holds that Trump and a number of other people, including former special counsel Robert Mueller and a secretly-still-alive John F. Kennedy Jr., are secretly planning a martial law operation called "The Storm" to expose prominent Democrats and celebrities' involvement in a supposed Satanic pedophile ring that consumes the flesh and blood of their child victims. Some of its believers have recycled old anti-Semitic tropes into their mythology.
The FBI has warned QAnon is a potential source of domestic terrorism, and some of its followers have been charged with politically-motivated crimes ranging from child abduction to the assassination of a Gambino crime boss. Despite this, some incoming members of Congress have offered support for the movement.
Even though Trump has been informed what QAnon represents, this isn't the only time he has praised them. During an August press conference, when asked if he would condemn the movement, he replied, "I understand they like me very much."