Has fear of Muslims gone mainstream for Minnesota Republicans?
Minn Post The Chisago County GOP Dinner on Sept. 28 in Forest Lake featured, for the most part, a roster of notables typical for a party gathering during a busy election season: Present were the two Republican candidates for U.S. Senate, state Sen. Karin Housley and state Rep. Jim Newberger; the candidate for the 8th Congressional District, Pete Stauber; and the party’s nominee for lieutenant governor, Donna Bergstrom, along with several down-ballot candidates.
The evening’s keynote speaker was Chris Gaubatz, a “national security consultant, speaker, and conservative political activist” who “trains law enforcement on the severity and dangers of the jihadi network in the U.S.” Over turkey breast and green beans almondine, attendees listened to Gaubatz make inflammatory comments about Muslim-American organizations and refugees from Muslim countries, according to a recording taken from the event.
(Chris went undercover as an intern at CAIR headquarters, pretending to be a Muslim convert to expose their plans for Civilization Jihad and their ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. He was able to obtain thousands of documents related to the operation of the group, which he and other critics have long argued is linked to the Palestinian terror group Hamas.You can read more about what he did during his time at CAIR in the book authored by his father called “Muslim Mafia”)
Gaubatz told the crowd that members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a leading Muslim advocacy group, consisted of “suit-wearing jihadis” whose ideology was indistinguishable from that of al-Qaeda or the Islamic State. He suggested the refugee resettlement program was a way for terrorists to infiltrate the U.S., and alluded to a conspiracy theory he has explored online, which argues that radical Muslims had something to do with the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas.
“I’m traveling all over this state and people are concerned about the refugee resettlement issue,” Gaubatz said to the attendees. He explained that one of the Republican Party’s problems is that its candidates do not make a “clear enough distinction” on the refugee issue in important political races.
“This is the one issue that for those particularly in very tight races or even those that are behind, in particular races, you start bringing this up and I promise you, the media will slam you, they will call you an Islamophobe, they will call you every name in the book, but the people sitting at home watching it will go ‘Yes, finally somebody’s saying something,’” he said. “So for independents, and for Republicans and Republican-leaning voters, this is a winning issue right now.”
The proximity of activists like Gaubatz to top Republican figures, combined with heated campaign rhetoric about Muslim refugees and controversies like GOP officials publicly warning that Muslims may “infiltrate” the Minnesota caucuses, has confirmed, for some, that Islamophobia is increasingly part of the Republican Party mainstream. And, as Gaubatz’s comments underscore in stark relief, stoking fear about Muslims in the era of Donald Trump might be a more potent political strategy than ever.
Read the rest HERE
Below is a short video of Chris Gaubatz. There are a lot more available on Youtube.