Fascism First: Nick Fuentes and The Spread of Authoritarian Political Ideology On MAGA’s Right Flank

When Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene spoke at the America First Political Action Conference in 2022, she justified her decision to address the gathering of white nationalists by insisting that her mission was to give guidance to a group of “young conservatives who feel cast aside and marginalized by society.”

If AFPAC attendees “feel cast aside and marginalized by society,” that is likely because they are largely unquestioning followers of AFPAC organizer Nick Fuentes, the cult leader who heads up the America First movement and who is infamous for the torrents of antisemitism, racism, misogyny, and endless admiration for Adolf Hitler that he espouses nightly during his livestream broadcasts.

Right Wing Watch has for years documented the fact that Fuentes and many of his followers are no mere “young conservatives” but rather are full-blown fascists who—in spite of their “America First” moniker—hate this nation, the Constitution, and our form of government and want to see it overthrown and replaced by a literal dictatorship.

While Fuentes’ history of bigotry and open advocacy of fascism have gotten him banned from nearly every major social media platform and banned from various banks and businesses, he still managed to have dinner at Mar-a-Lago with former President Donald Trump in November of 2022 and has secured the support of elected leaders like Taylor Greene, Rep. Paul Gosar, and Arizona state Sen. Wendy Rogers.

Fuentes has been very open about his agenda. He wants to see a “supreme leader totalitarian Christian dictator” who jails his opponents, takes a child bride, imposes Christian law on the nation, bans non-Christians from holding office, creates a “Catholic Taliban” that forces everyone to convert to Catholicism through Inquisitions, sends the military into Black neighborhoods, orders security force to gun down citizens in the streets, and requires women to wear burkas.

Contraception, fornication, homosexuality, and pornography would all be outlawed in Fuentes’ ideal world, he says, and women would be banned from going to school or voting, and could be burned alive at the stake for being witches.

Fuentes knows that this sort of agenda is never going to win elections and that even receiving support from a handful of elected leaders is not going to bring about the fascist revolution he believes this country needs. Thus, he has settled into a long-term strategy that he believes will have him controlling the reins of power in this nation decades from now.

During a livestream in late May, Fuentes stated that his plan is to use his nightly program and appearances on other programs to spread his ideas to as many young people as possible on the assumption that a certain percentage of them will then go on to become highly successful in business and politics. If these activists are properly indoctrinated, Fuentes believes they will then use their money, power, and influence to bring about the far-right authoritarian dictatorship for which he has been advocating.

“I don’t want to tell you our full game plan, but I’ve been pretty transparent about it from the beginning,” Fuentes said. “My goal is to redpill as many teenagers and 20-somethings as possible, and then a fraction of them are going to become millionaires or professionals or get into politics. And then in 10 years, there’s gonna be 1,000 or 2,000 people or 10,000 people in American politics at a high level with influence and money and power and they’re gonna believe the things I say on the show.”

“And so one becomes many,” Fuentes said. “And a guy who is outside of the system for saying these things is now, by proxy, inside the system everywhere.”

Fuentes claimed that he has already “achieved that in a significant way,” asserting that every day he finds out that his supporters are working “in different positions” all over the place.

“If I could tell you, you would go crazy,” Fuentes bragged.

It is impossible to know if Fuentes’ claim is simply bluster, but it is known that Rep. Gosar has a Fuentes supporter working in his congressional office and that another claimed to have been elected a local GOP chair in Michigan. Presumably, there are more Fuentes’ supporters working in politics at various levels throughout the nation.

Meanwhile, Fuentes is taking every opportunity to fill his own streaming platform with those who will help to spread his message as he seeks to reach receptive audiences on other platforms. At the same time, those in his orbit are working to infiltrate conservative organizations, all in an effort to shift the Overton Window and make their extreme agenda more acceptable to mainstream audiences.

And that is why it is important to expose the authoritarian ideology that Fuentes promotes. And that is why, when Fuentes broke into broader public view late last year as part of Kanye West’s entourage at Trump’s dinner table, national media turned to Right Wing Watch to get the facts on Fuentes, with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow calling Right Wing Watch “a fire alarm system for the whole country.”

Fuentes and his ilk know that they have little chance of winning converts or elections with the stream of bigotry, intolerance, and hatred that the movement promotes. As such, Fuentes has realized that he must focus on gaining power from the inside via surrogates if he is to ever have any hope of seeing the fascist dictatorship he longs for imposed on this nation. Meanwhile, Fuentes is more readily able to indoctrinate young men into his anti-democratic ideology, and move closer to the achievement of his long-term goals, every time a politician like Donald Trump or Paul Gosar gives him and his movement credibility, and every time a right-wing political or media figure encourages his followers by adopting their rhetoric or policy agenda as their own.

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