Among the hard right, activists are fighting about whether Georgia Senate candidates Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue deserve Republican votes in the Jan. 5 runoff if they don’t “stop the steal”—that is, support unfounded allegations of voter fraud in an effort to hand the election to President Donald Trump. Notably, among those brawling it out on social media is Jack Posobiec, a far-right activist and commentator with One America News Network, and Ali Alexander, a political operative with extremist connections and the main organizer of the Stop the Steal campaign.
Much has been made of the hot mess on display at the so-called Stop the Steal rally in Atlanta last Wednesday at which Georgia state Rep. Vernon Jones called for supporters to vote for Loeffler and Perdue, while Atlanta attorneys Lin Wood and Sidney Powell pushed outlandish conspiracy theories and called for voters to stay home on Election Day, accusing the two Republican Senate candidates of not going to bat for Trump. The rally, which was organized by Alexander, was described by fellow hard-right activist and friend Mike Cernovich as an “insurrection.”
Alexander, however, started the infighting among hard-right activists earlier that week on Tuesday when, as Right Wing Watch reported, he said he’d burn down the GOP if they didn’t issue press releases supporting the Stop the Steal campaign. “We’ll burn it all down in the next cycle,” Alexander threatened, adding that he’d tell people to support primary challengers to those Republicans who didn’t get on board with Stop the Steal.
Jack Posobiec, who appears to have heard that message and watched the rally, was quick to express his displeasure on Periscope.
“You can do both. … You can defend the integrity of our voting systems, and you can defend the laws, while at the same time defending Georgia because the road to the Senate is through Georgia,” he said, enunciating his words and speaking slowly. “You’re going to organize against it? No. I’m going to have to bring Scott Presler back on here, because Scott Presler has been—don’t you even for a second disrespect the work that Scott Presler and so many well-meaning conservative activists have done. How dare you disrespect them? And disrespect the people they’ve been registering, the people they’ve been motivating, and the people they’ve been bringing out? And Scott is on the right side of history.”
“Lay out your list of grievances, tell them what you want, be specific. Do I have to teach you guys how to negotiate?” he said. “You can’t strap on a political suicide vest and not make any demands. Right? ‘We’re going to blow up the party, we’re going to blow up the movement.’ Unless what? No, that doesn’t work, that’s not negotiation.”
“Do not be on the side of letting it all slip away,” Posobiec added. “The movement we spent five years building is not worth blowing up, and I’m not letting anyone blow it up.”
He also took the moment to pull out his “OG card,” claiming he and fellow activists Presler and Ryan Fournier supported Trump from day one while “there are people who didn’t come around until after Trump won and acted like they were part of the movement.”
Alexander, who seems to have watched Posobiec’s broadcast, lashed out at Posobiec in an apparently since deleted broadcast on Periscope accessed by Right Wing Watch on Thursday. “Jack Posobiec owes me an apology,” Alexander said. “If you’ve got a secret, I know it,” he added, suggesting someone had a cocaine problem and that he expected an apology in the next 12 hours. “If you’re getting between that and this, then I will slaughter you politically.”
“When Jack said we haven’t been specific about our demands, uh, yes, we have. We had 7,000 people who were on the same page of calling for a special session,” he said in a different, more subdued Periscope posted Wednesday night in which he called Posobiec “a good friend of mine.”
“I love my friends, but the fate of the republic is at stake, and I’ve already told y’all that. I’m not playing games with nobody, OK?” he said. “I don’t need anybody to silently threaten me. I’m done with that. If you threaten me, I’ll just tell the public … friend or foe.”
In that video, Alexander also defended Lin Wood, claiming neither of them told voters to boycott the runoff, saying, “You want me to deplatform Lin Wood, who has a bigger platform than me? … You want me to participate in lynching Lin Wood?”
In the apparently since-deleted Periscope, he accused people of trying to divide him and convicted felon Roger Stone, who Alexander said first came up with the “stop the steal” language and helped Alexander organize the 2018 Stop the Steal campaign for the Senate race in Florida.
“I’m a patriotic psychopath, and I’m on a mission from God,” Alexander said in that broadcast. “There are two sides of history coming, and we’re about to go to war. Now, figuratively, who knows? Literally, who knows? But there are two sides that are about to compete in a way of ultimate destruction. … If you think incrementalism is something Christians will tolerate, no, I’m about to radicalize 50 million Christians.”
Meanwhile, Cernovich, who came to prominence during the Gamergate harassment campaign and leveraged his internet fame to boost the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, pointed to a tweet of Trump’s Thursday and said the president had endorsed the Stop the Steal campaign’s plan. He also said that someone owed Alexander an apology.
Cernovich largely sided with Alexander’s outlook in a Periscope video posted shortly after the Georgia rally, but he also said the rally could well lose the GOP the Senate: “That Georgia rally I just watched was historical. It was history in the making, and as of right now, the GOP has lost the Senate.”
“It’s not my problem what happens to the GOP,” he said. “You think Ali Alexander cares about the GOP leadership? He was never treated well.” He added: “How do you have a mutiny? You don’t take care of people … and they turn on you.”
“You have to give me a reason to vote for you, or that’s the end. I don’t care. I’m not afraid of Democrats taking over the Senate,” he said. “Let [Sen. Chuck] Schumer make it so bad that in 2022 we have real change.”
At Trump’s Saturday rally in Valdosta, Georgia, the president was met with “stop the steal” chants when he claimed the vote had been rigged in that state, according to Politico, but he also addressed calls to not vote for Loeffler and Perdue, telling the crowd, “Don’t listen to my friends.”