No TrumpsπŸ‘±‍♂️ Newsbites
Why QAnon are pinning their last desperate hopes on Trump emerging as president on March 4
  • QAnon followers believe that Trump will be reinstated as president on March 4, 2021.
  • The conspiracy theory is rooted in the discredited beliefs of the sovereign citizen movement.
  • It has gained popularity with QAnon followers after being circulated on Telegram and Gam.
QAnon followers, unable to cope with Joe Biden's elevation to president in January, have now coopted a new belief to argue that the next legitimate inauguration date will be on March 4.

After President Joe Biden's inauguration on January 20, 2021, some QAnon believers concluded that their conspiracy theory was a "lie." But its most fervent followers weren't ready to give up on their conspiratorial beliefs, clinging to an absurd hope that former President Donald Trump will be sworn in at a later date.

Using ever-shifting goalposts, the pro-Trump conspiracists have now set their eyes on March 4, 2021.

The belief that Trump will be sworn in on March 4 is rooted in theories promoted by the obscure sovereign citizen movement.

The sovereign citizen movement is a highly-fragmented grouping of Americans who believe taxes, US currency, and even the US government to be illegitimate.

A minority of them believe that laws do not apply to them at all, resulting in the FBI designating some members as "domestic terrorists" and "anti-government extremists."

A central tenet of the movement is that the 14th Amendment, ratified in 1868, converted "sovereign citizens" into "federal citizens."

This belief also goes so far as to dismiss the validity of any presidency after 1868, making Ulysses S. Grant the last valid president.

The ideas are esoteric and, arguably, nonsensical.

"You really feel like you're in an Alice in Wonderland world when you start going through the ideas of the sovereign citizens," Michael Barkun, professor emeritus of political science at Syracuse University, told Insider. "It's like you've gone down some kind of rabbit hole into a parallel universe."

Some sovereign citizens also believe that an obscure law from 1871 reveals that the US has become a corporation.

The District of Columbia Organic Act established a single municipal government for Washington, DC. The use of the word "corporation," referring to an incorporated district, has led to the mistaken interpretation of this to mean that the entirety of the US became a business.

"Some believe that President Joe Biden is the executive of a bankrupt corporation — the United States Inc.," said Travis View said, conspiracy theory expert and host of the QAnon Anonymous podcast.

Creating an alternate reality based on a misinterpretation of a minor detail in an old law is typical of conspiracy groups, Media Matter's deputy research director Stefanie Le told Insider.

"They can create elaborate mythologies based on the smallest and least significant details," she said.
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Rand Paul is facing backlash for his anti-trans comments equating gender-affirming surgery to 'genital mutilation'
  • Sen. Rand Paul compared gender-affirming surgery for trans people to "genital mutilation" during a hearing for Dr. Rachel Levine.
  • Levine, if confirmed by the Senate, will be the first openly trans official approved by the chamber.
  • Some of Paul's Democratic colleagues sharply rebuked his remarks.
Sen. Patty Murray, a Democrat from Washington and the chair of the Senate health committee, rebuked Paul's questions.

"It is really critical to me that our nominees be treated with respect and that our questions focus on their qualifications and the work ahead of us, rather than on ideological and harmful misrepresentations like those we heard from Senator Paul earlier," Murray said on Thursday.

... Levine, 64, is a professor of pediatrics and psychiatry at the Penn State College of Medicine. She also serves as the president of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials.

In separate remarks on Thursday, Sen. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer condemned Republican lawmakers speaking out against trans rights.

Republican "attacks on trans people and the transgender community are just mean," Schumer said during an in-person press briefing. "And show a complete lack of understanding and a complete lack of empathy. They don't represent our views, and they don't represent the views of a majority of Americans. Their despicable comments just make my blood boil with anger. If I didn't have a mask, you could see my teeth gritting."
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CPAC is missing students and its legendary party scene. Republicans are concerned the low-energy event reflects the GOP's standing with young voters in a post-Trump world.
  • Conservatives are wondering why the college students are missing from CPAC this year.
  • CPAC has long been famous for its party scene, from hot tub parties with congressmen to ice-luge shots.
  • 'That's the thing I miss most,' longtime Trump confidant Roger Stone told Insider on Saturday.
There's a common refrain among Republicans and conservatives roaming the halls of this year's Conservative Political Action Conference: "Where are all the students?"

The lack of eager right-leaning teenagers and 20-somethings collecting free schwag and chugging beers is one of the most glaring and obvious contrasts from the annual conservative conferences held during the before times in and around Washington DC.

But in this pandemic wasteland of 2021, where even CPAC has decamped to a popular family hotel a short 20-minute drive from Disney World, it's the lack of young people that is getting noticed.

... This year, the lack of young conservatives is being chalked up to the painfully obvious COVID-19 restrictions that have upended everything from school to professional sports. Conference organizers picked Orlando over DC because of the Sunshine State's lax pandemic rules.

But moving the event to central Florida also has meant less energy in the room. Chalk that up in no small part to the typical reservoir of Capitol Hill GOP interns and aspiring young politicos who are no longer just a Metro or Uber ride away from the Super Bowl of conservative events.

Recognizing those MIA students, longtime conservatives in town for CPAC can't help but observe the real-life concern that Republicans are losing a new generation of activists and supporters.

... "You can't be a party that looks backward, it has to look forward," said one longtime CPAC attendee who noted the absence of college students this year. "Trump is still looking backward and it is hurting the party."
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Ted Cruz said the Republican Party is 'not just the party of country clubs' but CPAC is fixated on Donald Trump — a man who literally lives at one
  • Sen. Ted Cruz said the GOP is for the working class and "not just the party of country clubs."
  • But CPAC, where Cruz was speaking, seemed to be all about Donald Trump, who lives at a club he also owns.
  • Cruz himself was criticized last week for leaving frigid Texas to visit a luxury resort in Cancun.
The club is not open to the public and membership costs reportedly soared to $200,000 plus a $14,000 annual fee after Trump was elected. That's nearly four times the average annual salary for a Florida police officer or a steel worker, both professions Cruz called out in his speech.
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CPAC stage is shaped like a Nordic rune used on some Nazi uniforms
  • Twitter users noted the design of a stage at CPAC closely resembles a symbol used on Nazi uniforms.
  • CPAC organizer Matt Schlapp denied the resemblance was intentional, calling the idea "outrageous and slanderous."
  • The "Odal rune" has also been used by white supremacists in Europe and North America.
The design of the stage is in the shape of an "Odal rune," which was used on Nazi uniforms in some divisions of the SS and has also been used by white supremacists in Europe and North America in the years following World War II.

... Runic alphabets predate the modern Roman alphabet and were used widely across Europe. They were appropriated by white supremacists due to the use of runes by Nazi Germany.

Nazis have coopted numerous symbols from other cultures. The swastika was used for millennia as a symbol of good fortune by Buddhists, Hindus, and Jains before being appropriated by Nazis.
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The 'larger-than-life' statue of Donald Trump at CPAC was made in Mexico
  • The life-size statue of Donald Trump at CPAC was actually made in Mexico.
  • Tommy Zegan told Politico he spent over six months making it with three men in Rosarito, Mexico.
  • It contrasts the "America First" agenda Trump pushed when he was in office.
The life-size statue of former President Donald Trump that was displayed at the Conservative Political Action Conference was actually made in Mexico, Politico's Playbook reported.

The artist who made it, Tommy Zegan, is an ex-pat living in Mexico. Zegan told Politico that he spent more than six months making it with the help of three men in Rosarito, Mexico.

... The making of the Trump statue in Mexico is in stark contrast to Trump's "America First" stance that he ran on during his 2016 bid for president and policies he implemented while in office.

In April 2017, Trump signed an executive order to promote the idea of "Buy American and Hire American."

"We are going to defend our workers, protect our jobs and finally put America first," Trump said.

In July 2020, it was revealed that Trump's US properties imported more than eight tons of Chinese goods. While on the campaign trail, Trump lashed out at trade agreements between the US and China. In 2018 and 2019, he spent months imposing tariffs on the country in a long back and forth battle that experts said mostly harmed US companies.
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or Trump-ism

Trumpism refers to the nontraditional political philosophy and approach espoused by Donald Trump and his supporters. The term Trumpism can also be used to directly refer to an outrageous or idiosyncratic statement made by Donald Trump.

Trump, whom many observers consider an anomaly, left the White House by saying, “We will be back in some form.” His legacy is “Trumpism” – a wave of white nationalism.

Trumpisms are Bushisms on steroids.