An aide inside the office of far-right conspiracy theorist U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) has been linked to neo-Nazi Nick Fuentes, an incel, white supremacist and white Christian nationalist who promotes antisemitism, Holocaust denialism, racism, and misogynistic and anti-LGBTQ extremist beliefs. Fuentes is head of the so-called “Groypers.”
“The revelation that a devotee of Fuentes appears to have infiltrated a congressional office represents a previously unknown and unseen degree of influence for the modern white supremacist movement,” reports Talking Points Memo‘s Hunter Walker in an exclusive.
TPM reveals it “has uncovered an extensive digital trail of interconnected Groyper social media pages using variations of the ‘ChickenRight’ and ‘Chikken’ handles that can be linked to Wade Searle, who works as the digital director for Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), one of the most extreme, far-right members of Congress.”
The 105-year old organization American Jewish Congress states Gosar “has sparked controversy for embracing conspiracy theories and associating himself with antisemites, white supremacists, and neo-Nazis.”
“The Groypers are essentially the equivalent of neo-Nazis,” Vanderbilt University historian Nicole Hemmer told TPM. “They are attached to violent events like Jan. 6. Nick Fuentes, as sort of the organizer of the Groypers, expresses Holocaust denialism, white supremacy, white nationalism, pretty strong anti-women bigotry, he calls for a kind of return to Twelfth Century Catholicism. They’re an extremist group that is OK with violence.”
“A kind of even sub rosa identification of Groypers as congressional aides is the same as having Holocaust deniers, or alt righters, or, you know, Aryan Nations people,” Hemmer added. “It’s as extreme and as racist as you get in the United States.”
Reporting the evidence it has obtained, TPM notes that part of it includes Fuentes last year demanding in an online streaming chat, “Now it’s time to pledge your allegiance to me forever, OK?”
Among those who “seemed to pledge” loyalty to Fuentes, Walker notes, was Wade Searle.
“One audience member who pledged fealty to Fuentes used the handle ‘Chikken.’ A wrench icon next to their name indicated they were a moderator in the chatroom for Fuentes’ streams. ‘Chikken’ sent in multiple hand emojis, signaling their loyalty to Fuentes as he elaborated on the pledge.”
“Raise your right hand. ‘I swear my undying allegiance to Nicholas J. Fuentes and the America First movement, so help me God,’” Fuentes told the group. “Raise your hand. Hold it high. ‘I swear I will defend the white race, my nation America, and my savior Jesus Christ, and my loyalty to the America First movement, Nicholas J. Fuentes, so help me God.’”
Unlike others on the chat who “gave a few dollars,” one, “who used the handle ‘Chikkenright,’ gave an especially generous gift, $150, along with a note that gushed to Fuentes, ‘You are our voice!'”
TPM also points to this photo posted to Searle’s Instagram account, of Searle and Gosar.
That account has a Latin cross emoji, and identifies Searle as Gosar’s Digital Director.
Separately, TPM publisher Josh Marshall on social media notes, “Obviously having an influential member of a major neo-nazi group working on the govt payroll as a congressional staffer is the headline here. But if you look closely at the piece you get the strong sense that Gosar’s office is recruiting recent high school graduates.”
He adds in a post at TPM, “In recent years, Gosar has flirted with the group and its leader – alternatively expressing agreement with him and then blaming misunderstandings or scheduling snafus when he comes under scrutiny for it. But as Hunter shows the movement members are actually working in Gosar’s office – a fact that is understandably viewed as a coup and a fact of great value within the movement itself.”