Still, Democrats certainly take Sen’s notion seriously. Masters, even if it makes them shiver.
Joe Wolf, a Democratic consultant in Phoenix, calls Masters a “fascinating” candidate, adding, “He talks about the same issues as everyone else, but he talks about them in a very different way.” Wolf points to campaign video where Masters argues families used to get by on one income but can’t anymore due to rising cost of healthcare, college and housing – Masters ranting at the both corporate greed and a government that has abandoned its people. For the first generation who are expected to earn less than their parents, who are seeing inflation and house prices soar, this message resonates. In a different world, Wolf says, Masters might have been the most dynamic candidate on the ballot. But with his effusive praise for Trump and all things Trumpian, Masters closed the door on a real cross-call: “MAGA’s taint is too much.” And that’s not to mention his shocking videos, like the one in which he looks into the camera lens and explains that his weapons are made “to kill people”.
“He scares me a little,” Wolf said.
Still, Wolf acknowledges that if Masters succeeds in the primary, he’ll have a decent chance of beating Kelly in the November election. The political environment is so bad for Democrats, he notes, that even a flawed Republican candidate can win.
Masters knows his videos are freaking out his opponents. That’s part of the fun. For too long, Republicans have cowered in front of the “blue check” crowd on Twitter, he says. In the Masters account, Mitt Romney was “Mr. Nice Guy,” as accommodating as possible to the press and the left, and they still ate it raw. Trump fought the media and liberal institutions head-on, and he won. That’s the biggest lesson Republicans should take from Trump, and it’s the one Carlson constantly preaches: Don’t cower. Don’t be afraid of being called a racist for loving America and prioritizing this country over others. Don’t give the media an inch. Take the offensive and fight.
If he and candidates like Vance can win in November, they will work to “rebuild” the Republican Party into an “American-first, pro-family, pro-worker” party, Masters promises. They would join at least one other conservative populist who received funding from Thiel: Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri, who led Congress’s challenge to Biden’s Jan. 6 win, and who also endorsed Masters.
“It certainly looks more nationalistic, but I think it’s healthy nationalism,” he says of the party he hopes to reshape. “There’s this N-word – nationalism – that you’re not supposed to say.”
I tell him that I don’t think you’re supposed to refer to nationalism as the “N word” either.
“I said that on purpose because it’s like this taboo: ‘You can’t be a nationalist!’ But what if you don’t think the job of an American official is to look after America first, and Americans first, before the world or the international community or Botswana? Like what the hell? »
Masters says a lot of things that candidates aren’t supposed to say.
In addition to the Ted Kaczynski signal amplification, Masters has come under scrutiny for a 2006 essay he wrote for the libertarian site LewRockwell.com which was recently uncovered by Jewish insider; it included a quote from senior Nazi official Hermann Goering and asserted that the United States had not been involved in a just war for 140 years. In a statement to Jewish insider, Masters said he did not agree with the Nazi leader’s views and that as an undergraduate anti-war activist he had gone “too far” in speaking out against so many American wars. But he also hit back at the “cheap journalist tactic” of “guilt by association”.
It would be easy for him to denounce the essay as being misinterpreted or the deaf ramblings of a stupid schoolboy. But that’s not his style. After the one-on-one debate, Masters brings up the Jewish insider piece for me spontaneously and defends his academic writing. The fact that he cannot quote a Nazi explaining how the Nazis brought about the horror of war and genocide symbolizes everything that is wrong with American politics right now, he says. This kind of cowering of thought-stifling cancel culture warriors is what has turned the right into a neutral force of blandness. Not to mention, he adds, that Adolf Hitler coined the phrase “the big lie.”