Donald Trump wants to be president forever. He made that clear again with his tweet on Wednesday that featured campaign signs of Trump for President extending from 2020 to 2048. But that scenario is not going to happen, barring Trump being able to somehow suspend the 22nd Amendment of our Constitution.
It’s clear though that regardless of how long Trump remains in the White House, he and many in his base want Trumpism—a celebration of cruelty, bigotry, and sexism—to continue long after he’s gone. That helps explain Trump’s support for anti-Muslim bigot Laura Loomer, who is running for Congress in Florida’s 21st District—and, incredibly, is increasingly the likely GOP nominee. After all, anti-Muslim bigotry is one of the cornerstones of Trumpism.
Before we talk how Trump, Rep. Jim Jordan, GOP Florida officials, and even a Trump Fox News ally are promoting Loomer, let me give you a Loomer primer. First, she’s not the least bit bashful about her efforts to stoke hate against Muslims.
In 2017, she bragged on Twitter about being a “#ProudIslamophobe,” as she called Muslims “savages,” calling for a ban on allowing Muslims into America “EVER AGAIN.” She has called Islam a “cancer,” and worse, she wrote that there’s “no such thing as a moderate Muslim. They’re ALL the same.” Loomer dangerously wants you to believe that a Muslim American like myself is no different than a person in ISIS.
Loomer, who once worked for the right-wing group Project Veritas, seems to especially despise immigrant Muslims, tweeting in 2017, “Someone needs to create a non-Islamic version of Uber or Lyft because I never want to support another Islamic immigrant driver.” That resulted in her being banned from Uber and Lyft for violating its community standards, which prompted Loomer to tweet, “Uber will literally hire an Islamic terrorist, but they will ban a conservative journalist for addressing legitimate safety concerns.”
In 2019, Loomer took to Instagram, where she made a video attacking Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) in vile terms, blaming all Muslims including Omar for 9/11, and adding, “Muslims should not even be allowed to seek positions of political office in this country.”
Beyond social media, in October 2018 Loomer praised and appeared with self-professed Canadian white nationalist Faith Goldy, who has claimed in the past that homosexuality facilitated the Holocaust and openly recited and defended the “14 word” mantra used by white supremacists. Loomer also trespassed on Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s property in January 2019 along with her colleague, Charlottesville Unite the Right marcher Antonio Foreman, to denounce her refusal to support Trump’s wall. While on Pelosi’s property, Loomer reportedly made racist comments about Latinos.
Loomer’s history of spewing hate online resulted in her being banned in the past year from just about every social media platform out there. In November 2018 Twitter banned Loomer for violating its rules against hateful conduct. In May 2019 Loomer was banned by both Facebook and Instagram, along with others who had used these platforms to promote haters, such as Louis Farrakhan for repeated anti-Semitic statements, and Paul Nehlen, the Wisconsin businessman who ran for Congress and continually spewed white supremacist garbage.
I think you get the idea. Loomer is someone who, in the times before Trump, would’ve been marginalized to the fringes of society along with other bigots and racists. But these aren’t normal times. This is the time of Trump, and Loomer is Trumpism personified. She fits perfectly in today’s party of Trump which is why in August 2019 she announced her run for Congress as a Republican to take on Democratic Rep. Lois Frankel in the Palm Beach-area district. Loomer describes Frankel as “a staunch obstructionist and critic of President Donald J. Trump.”
Anyone can run for office, even self-proclaimed neo-Nazi Arthur Jones, who in 2018 won the GOP nomination for Congress in an Illinois race. But it’s the reaction to that person’s candidacy that tells you far more. In the case of Jones, the Illinois State Republican Party denounced him as “morally reprehensible” and “a complete nutcase.”
In contrast, Loomer is being warmly embraced by the party of Trump, beginning with Trump himself. In late December, Trump retweeted a tweet from, “4 Laura Loomer ‘The Antidote to the Squad’” that read in all Caps, “PLZ $$$ LAURA LOOMER FOR CONGRESS.”
And this week, the Trump campaign used Loomer’s list of campaign donors to fundraise for his own campaign in a letter, as Mediaite.com reported, that reads in large type on top “Loomered” and notes it was sent by a company Loomer owns.
Just as alarming is that Florida State GOP chair Joe Gruters, who also serves as a state senator, organized a press conference two weeks ago featuring Loomer in support of his bill to stop what he dubs censorship by social media companies.
At this press conference, Loomer proclaimed that hate speech is a “manufactured term” designed to silence conservatives. And Gruters, while flanked by other GOP state officials, declared, “I am proud to have Laura Loomer stand with me here today.” The Florida GOP state chair being proud to stand with a person who has spewed hate and endorsed a self-professed white supremacist would be shocking in the past, but now it’s just another day in Trump’s GOP.
Even Trump lover and Fox News host Jeannie Pirro was pictured with Loomer in December and reportedly endorsed her. This all helps explain why a person like Loomer is outraising her GOP primary opponents and even Democratic Rep. Frankel, positioning her for now as the likely GOP nominee. (The primary will be held on Aug. 18.)
For those who think Trumpism ends with Trump, think again. Loomer, who is 26, and the others we saw march in Charlottesville in defense of white supremacy are part of a younger generation that will be with us long after Trump. The best and only antidote to driving Trumpism to the fringes of society where it belongs is winning big in November. Barring that, Trumpism will spread and infect our nation like a deadly cancer.