As November 5th draws closer, and as Virginia Republican panic levels at the prospects of losing power ramp up even further, where else do Republican candidates go? To hard-right talk radio, of course, where they can rant and rave to their hearts’ content, with nobody ever breaking in to tell them that they are completely full of it; that basically everything they’re saying is false, misleading, or unhinged; or just to provide a different point of view. Nope. Instead, in the right-wing echo chamber, what you get is constant reinforcement of the hysteria, the falsehoods, the faux victimization, the robotic talking points. It’s really unhealthy, among other issues.
For instance, check out the following three interviews from this morning’s “John Fredericks Show.” As you can see, Fredericks was away, so Del. Nick Freitas (R) – the same guy who couldn’t even manage to turn in his petition signatures on time, so now is being forced to run a write-in campaign – was filling in…but the level of discourse remained at its usual (high) volume and (low) accuracy level.
In the first audio, Freitas talks to Prince William County Board of Supervisors (Coles District) Republican candidate Yesli Vega. The two of them basically spent 20 minutes ranting about a confrontation she had with a member of CASA in Action, which one of Vega’s Republican allies falsely claims is a “hate group,” but which actually is “the region’s largest pro-immigrant electoral organization.”
Specifically, Vega and her allies are referring to a recent incident in which an activist verbally confronted Vega regarding Vega’s support for 287(g) immigration enforcement and for deporting undocumented immigrants from Prince William County. Note that on Vega’s website, she vows to “work arm-in-arm with Sheriff Hill to make sure Prince William County is never turned into a Sanctuary County for dangerous criminals” and (highly dubiously) claims that “the program does [not] discriminate against anyone.” Which is exactly what the activist was (verbally/non-violently) confronting Vega about, heatedly accusing her of supporting a racist, discriminatory policy, with Vega denying that the policy was racist or discriminatory.
Anyway, Freitas and Vega spent 20 minutes this morning mostly echoing each other about how horrible this incident was, and then generalizing out to a much broader attack on Democrats for criticizing her NOT because of her policies, but because “I am a conservative woman” and “a strong conservative independent thinker.” And, according to Vega, “when you are an independent thinker, they come after you because god forbid you are someone that thinks for yourself and not somebody that goes with the flow and everything that the left is trying to portray conservatives to be in today’s society.”
So, you see, it’s not about people who find Vega’s policy positions noxious and call her out for them, it’s about supposed hostility to her very identity, as well as the supposed nastiness of Democrats, her opponent Raheel Sheikh‘s supposed “lies” (which are…what exactly?), etc. But the bottom line is that Vega’s right-wing Republican views are in black-and-white on her website, as are Democrat Raheel Sheikh’s on his website. I encourage everyone to check these out for yourselves and to decide for yourself who you agree with. For me, I’m strongly in Raheel Sheikh’s camp, and urge everyone in Coles District to vote for him on November 5!
The second audio is of Freitas with Del. Danica Roem (D-HD13)’s Republican opponent Kelly McGinn. This interview is another good example of the right-wing echo chamber of nonsense and hysteria. In this case, Freitas falsely claims that Roem has gone “far left” (note: she hasn’t) and supposedly attacked McGinn for being “just a mom” (note: that’s not true either), supposedly “disparaging motherhood as a credential for elected office which is again absurd and offensive,” blah blah blah. It’s truly bizarre – and false – but this is, after all, what Republicans love the most, assuming the role of victims at the hands of those horrible, horrible liberal bullies. And, of course, completely misconstruing and misrepresenting both what Democrats actually believe and also what the impacts of Democratic policies (e.g., transitioning from fossil fuels to clean energy) might be.
Now, Republican have the right to spew out whatever falsehoods they want. But what’s disturbing is the hermetically sealed echo chamber of their right-wing media ecosystem. A great example of which you can hear, below. Oh yeah, and on 11/5, everyone in HD13 make sure you vote to reelect Del. Danica Roem, who’s doing a great job for her district!
Finally, check out example #3 of the warped, fact-free-zone of the right-wing media echo chamber, this time with Freitas and 28th House of Delegates district Republican nominee Paul Milde (read more about him here), whose Democratic opponent is Josh Cole. This interview is pretty standard right-wing nuttiness, with Freitas and Milde competing to see who can sound more hysterical and unhinged. Thus, at various points in the ranting and raving, we get claims that Cole is “extremely far left”; how “you could basically build him out of the policy positions of Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren”; how Cole supposedly supports “Northam’s gun grab initiatives”; how Cole supposedly thinks that “we need to be Venezuela” and “ban air travel” (my god, where does Freitas get this crap from???); blah blah blah. So yeah, on 11/5, if you live in HD28 make sure you vote for Josh Cole – and reject the lunacy of Paul Milde and his ideological soulmate Nick Freitas.