Her name is Jo Rae Perkins. She will be running against Jeff Merkley (D-OR) for his Senate seat. And she believes, promotes and is running on every insane conspiracy, COVID and more, rocketing around the crazies and the stupids in this country. You know, what we would otherwise call “countrymen,” except…no.
It’s no longer pertinent to ask the question, “Where does the GOP find these people?” Because “these people” are apparently the only people the GOP can find. And I’m not posting this to raise any alarms about the absolutely wonderful Jeff Merkley. In fact, a few items from this astonishing story could be subtitled: “Watch the GOP commit mass suicide.”
SEATTLE — Republicans in Oregon have selected a Senate candidate who promotes the QAnon conspiracy theory, the latest sign that conservatives are increasingly willing to embrace a movement built on a baseless series of plotlines about President Trump battling a shadowy globalist cabal.
Ms. Perkins said in an interview that the vote in Tuesday’s election was “monumental” as she saw QAnon supporters around the state and the country back her campaign.
“We are seeing more and more people getting emboldened as we see more and more information get out there,” she said. “And as people put together more and more pieces of the puzzle, they can see, yeah, this is real.”
The conspiracy theory began in 2017 when someone claiming to have top-secret information began posting under a pseudonym to the online message board 4chan. Those continuing posts from the person identified as “Q” have woven a fantastical plot about the planet’s elites: a global cabal of politicians and celebrities controlling governments, media, banks and a child sex-trafficking ring.
(Whenever you see “child sex-trafficking ring,” or “pedophilia,” think Russia. Because I’m pretty sure that’s where this particular awfulness comes from. So much so, that I’m all in with, “Methinks the gentleman doth protest too much.” Choose your favorite gentleman.)
The posts portray Mr. Trump as a heroic mastermind working with patriotic members of government to dismantle the cabal and “deep state” actors, leading up to mass arrests of the likes of former President Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and others. Adherents pore over each new Q message, hunting for clues and patterns, pointing out coincidences involving the number 17 because Q is the 17th letter of the alphabet and embracing theories such as the idea that John F. Kennedy Jr. faked his own death and is alive now posting as Q.
Oh, I could just continue with this, but you understand how nuts this all is. But Jo Rae believes it, every little bit:
…Last May, the F.B.I. included QAnon in an intelligence bulletin that warned of potential violence stemming from “fringe political conspiracy theories.” But pushback against the conspiracy theory has been met with yet further theories of a growing plot.
“I believe that that was some of the deep state actors in the F.B.I. trying to put out disinformation,” said Ms. Perkins, an insurance agent who had previously lost primary campaigns for seats in Congress in 2018, 2016 and 2014.