best of WSWS for wednesday

As election approaches, Trump conspires to repudiate popular vote
SEP Political Committee, WSWS, Oct 27 2020

Trump at the swearing-in ceremony for Amy Coney Barrett as Associate Justice
of the US Supreme Court. (Photo: Joyce N Boghosian)

With the US election less than one week away, the Trump administration is engaged in a conspiracy to remain in office even if he loses the popular vote. The ramming through of the nomination of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who was officially sworn in yesterday, is central to this strategy. To oversee the White House ceremony the previous evening, Trump chose Justice Clarence Thomas, the only remaining justice on the court who was part of the majority that decided the 2000 election case of Bush v. Gore. In that decision, the court ruled 5-4 to stop a recount of votes in Florida and hand the election to Bush, who lost the popular vote. The message could not be clearer: Barrett is to assist the court in a similar operation twenty years later. To underscore this point, the Supreme Court ruled the same day that the battleground state of Wisconsin cannot count mail-in ballots sent before Election Day but received after Nov 3. The decision, which robs tens or hundreds of thousands of Wisconsin residents of the right to vote, is a major victory for Trump and provides critical political support to his efforts to challenge results throughout the country. In an opinion concurring with the majority, Trump nominee Brett Kavanaugh repeated Trump’s baseless claim that mail-in voting is susceptible to fraud:

States want to avoid the chaos and suspicions of impropriety that can ensue if thousands of absentee ballots flow in after Election Day and potentially flip the results of an election.

That is, states want to avoid the “chaos” caused by counting all the votes. Kavanaugh favorably cited the Bush vs Gore decision. In the 2000 case, the court explicitly stated that the ruling could not be used as the precedent in future court decisions, and Kavanaugh’s concurrence was the first time that a justice has cited it since. In referring to the case, Kavanaugh was making plain what Trump is planning to do in 2020. Trump aims to use a stacked Supreme Court to make similar rulings for other states invalidating mail-in ballots, which he has claimed, without any factual basis, are subject to fraud. Hours after the ruling was published, Trump declared on Twitter:

Big problems and discrepancies with Mail In Ballots all over the USA. Must have final total on Nov 3.

There is, in fact, no constitutional basis for Trump’s insistence that the election must be decided by Nov 3. Election results are tallied by the states, which must choose their electors by the “safe harbor deadline” of Dec 8, after all votes are counted. Trump knows that the majority of mail-in ballots that would arrive near or after Nov 3 would be for Biden, and he is trying to create a pretext for declaring them invalid. Trump, with the assistance of the courts, is seeking to create enough doubt about the outcome to allow Republican-controlled state legislatures in critical battleground states, including Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Wisconsin, to certify slates of pro-Trump electors regardless of the popular vote. To buttress his court cases, Trump is seeking to incite far-right and fascist violence prior to, during and after Election Day. He is focusing his final campaign rallies on key battleground states where Trump supporters have organized plots targeting sitting governors. Less than three weeks after the exposure of a plot to kidnap and kill the governor of Michigan, Gretchen Whitmer, Trump held a campaign rally in the state capital in Lansing yesterday. Referring to the plot to kill her, Trump said that she had a “problem,” before adding:

I mean, we’ll see if it’s a problem, right? People are entitled to say: maybe it was a problem, maybe it wasn’t.

He is also relying on support from within the police to assist fascistic organizations in intimidating voters on Election Day. In Michigan, many local sheriffs have declared that they will not enforce state orders banning firearms at polling locations. On Tuesday, Michigan Court of Claims Judge Christopher Murray, appointed by former Republican Governor John Engler, issued a preliminary injunction effectively halting Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson’s order banning the open carry of firearms. The decision was welcomed by Republican state legislators, who denounced the “overreach” of the Whitmer administration. At his rally in Pennsylvania Monday, Trump railed against Democratic Governor Tom Wolf, threatening that “we are watching you.” He boasted of support from police throughout the country:

All we can say is: law enforcement is watching Nevada. It is watching Philadelphia and Pennsylvania, because they had a lot of strange things. We’re watching North Carolina. We’re watching Michigan.

While Trump has a strategy to steal the election, the Democrats have no strategy to oppose it. Indeed, they are doing everything they can to cover up the threat to the most fundamental democratic right, the right to vote. At his own campaign event on Tuesday, Biden made no mention of the election coup, the plot to kidnap and murder Whitmer and other governors, the confirmation of Barrett, the Supreme Court decision on Wisconsin, or anything else related to the threat to democratic rights in the election. At the final debate last week, the topic of Trump’s plots and threats to remain in power was not even mentioned. The Republicans were able to drive through the nomination of Barrett in only a couple of weeks, in the most fraught political circumstances, due entirely to the Democrats’ decision from the very beginning that they would take no action to block the nomination, from shutting down the government to utilizing the many procedural rules in the Senate to prevent a final hearing before the election. If the Democrats could not prevent the installation of Barrett, who can believe that they will be able to defend the outcome of an election that they win? The Democrats, a party of Wall Street and the military, are terrified of anything that will spark mass unrest, which would threaten to develop into a movement not just against Trump, but the entire capitalist system. In an interview with Politico over the weekend, Elissa Slotkin, a Democrat Congresswoman and former CIA agent, made clear that behind the scenes top Democrat Party officials are actively discussing what will happen in the event that Trump refuses to leave office. Slotkin, Politico noted, “worries that America could be heading toward a civil and constitutional crisis.” Indeed, she “can think of little else these days.” Rather than alerting the public to the danger of a Trump coup, however, the Democrats’ appeal is to the leaders of the military and intelligence agencies. Slotkin said:

To stay in power, Trump would need the support of his Cabinet, particularly the attorney general, the secretary of Defense, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the department head of Homeland Security. We’ve written letters to these guys to get them to think through their own red lines, what are they going to be willing to do and not do if, indeed, the president refuses to accept a loss.

All of this is taking place under conditions of the coronavirus pandemic, which is entering a new stage. The death toll, which has already surpassed 230k, is rising. New cases are at record levels. Trump’s conspiracies are inseparable from the ruling class policy of “herd immunity,” which will lead to a massive growth in coronavirus infections and deaths. In all of his speeches, Trump combines incitement of fascistic violence with ever more provocative dismissals of the danger of the pandemic and demands for an end to all restraints on its further spread. Trump’s program has no popular foundation. It is a program of death and social devastation. There is immense and growing social anger in the working class toward the entire policy of the ruling elites in response to the pandemic. Any attempt by Trump to stay in power under these conditions will lead to mass protests and social convulsions. The Democrats’ cowardice in response to Trump’s conspiracies is entirely bound up with their own opposition to any policies to address the spreading pandemic or a social crisis that is unlike anything seen since the 1930s. Beyond talking about masks, the Democrats have nothing to propose, as they reject any measures that threaten the interests of the corporate and financial elite. The SEP and our election campaign, Joseph Kishore for president and Norissa Santa Cruz for vice president, warn workers: To rely on the Democrat Party to defend democratic rights is nothing less than suicidal. They will defend nothing, not even their own election victory. A genuine struggle against Trump’s coup plotting can only be developed in opposition to the Democrats and the entire ruling class. The fight against Trump’s conspiracies must be connected to a socialist program in response to the expanding catastrophe, based on the interests of workers, not the ruling class. This includes the shutdown of non-essential production and schools as the pandemic spreads. All workers affected, including the tens of millions unemployed, must receive full income, paid for through a massive reallocation of wealth. Only on the basis of a socialist program can a serious movement be developed in defense of the most basic democratic right, the right to vote. On Sunday Nov 1 at 1 pm EST, the SEP is holding an online election meeting, “On the Eve of the Civil War Election: The Breakdown of American Democracy and the Fight for Socialism,” to examine Trump’s conspiracy and how to fight it.

Supreme Court ruling on mail-in ballots sets stage for stolen election
Eric London, WSWS, Oct 27 2020

Supreme Court building of the US (Photo: Joe Ravi)

On Monday, the US Supreme Court ruled that the battleground state of Wisconsin cannot count mail-in ballots sent before election day but received after Nov 3. The decision disenfranchizes hundreds of thousands of Wisconsin voters of the right to vote and legitimizes Trump’s claim that mail-in voting is “fraudulent.” Twenty years after its infamous Bush vs Gore ruling handed the election to George W Bush, the high court is now preparing another stolen election. It is a nakedly political ruling with no real basis in law. Earlier this year, the Supreme Court ruled in regard to Wisconsin’s primary elections that the state could accept late ballots postmarked by election day, the opposite of yesterday’s ruling, the only difference being that suppressing the vote now helps Trump. In an opinion concurring with the majority, Trump nominee Brett Kavanaugh echoed Trump’s statements about voter fraud, writing:

States want to avoid the chaos and suspicions of impropriety that can ensue if thousands of absentee ballots flow in after Election day and potentially flip the results of an election.

Never mind the “suspicions of impropriety” that tens of millions of Americans have over Trump nominees throwing out countless ballots under conditions where in-person voting poses a significant health risk. Wisconsin is itself a global epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. As the state’s hospitals fill up and its cases skyrocket, the Supreme Court is effectively ordering voters that they can only exercise their right to vote by risking death. The Supreme Court is legitimizing Trump’s lies about voter fraud and lending political support to his plan to mobilize far-right militias to stop mail-in ballots from being counted. At a speech Monday in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Trump again made clear that questioning the validity of mail-in ballots is essential to his strategy:

With these ballots, who is sending them, who is receiving them, who is sending them back, who is signing them? It’s ridiculous. It’s the only way we can lose. Massive fraud. And that’s what’s happening because all over the country you’re seeing it. Thousands and thousands of ballots. How about the military ballots that were thrown into a garbage can with the name Trump on it?

Hours after the Supreme Court ruling was published, Trump capitalized on the Supreme Court ruling by tweeting:

Big problems and discrepancies with Mail In Ballots all over the USA. Must have final total on Nov 3.

Attorneys supporting Trump’s re-election are presently scrambling to file lawsuits against any state measures that might facilitate voting, especially in battleground states. North Carolina Republicans have appealed to the Supreme Court to overturn an appellate court’s decision allowing the state to count absentee ballots after election day, provided they are postmarked by then. In Nevada the Trump campaign is fighting to stop densely-populated Clark County (where Las Vegas is located) from counting mail-in ballots on the pretense that voters’ signatures do not exactly match signatures in the state’s database. In Michigan, a right-wing challenge to Sec State Jocelyn Benson’s order barring open carry of firearms within 100 feet of polling stations is currently making its way through the state courts. The order was issued in response to the plot to kidnap and kill the state’s governor, Democrat Gretchen Whitmer. In Pennsylvania, a divided 4-4 Supreme Court ruled last week that it would not hear a challenge by the Trump campaign to that state’s decision to accept mail-in ballots until Nov 6 if postmarked by election day. However, last night’s confirmation of a ninth justice, Amy Coney Barrett, now means Trump has the five votes required to reverse course, take the case, and throw thousands more ballots. The Wisconsin decision will have major implications on the outcome of the vote.

Even under normal voting conditions, mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day but received afterward constitute a substantial portion of the vote. In 2016, 80k people in Wisconsin cast their ballots in this way (such votes were counted that year), and the election there was determined by 20k votes. This year, the pandemic has led to record mail-in voting, meaning the total number disenfranchised in Wisconsin alone will be far higher. Meanwhile, Trump and his crony postmaster general Louis DeJoy are systematically working to slow mail delivery to delay the arrival of as many mail-in ballots as possible. This summer, the postal service removed 671 sorting machines with no prior notice. In late July, the US Postal Service published a letter warning that 186m voters in 46 states and Washington DC faced a ‘heightened warning” of late delivery. The WaPo reported Tuesday that the mail is slowing further in the days before the election:

Mail service continues to lag, especially in certain swing states that could decide control of the White House.

In eastern Michigan, only 71.5% of first-class mail was delivered on time during the week of Oct 16-22. In heavily Democrat Philadelphia, just 76.9% was on time, compared to less Democrat Western Pennsylvania, with an on-time rate of 87.3%. An on-time rate of 90% is considered mediocre. It was revealing that the justice who swore in Coney Barrett was Clarence Thomas, the last remaining Republican who was on the court during the 2000 Bush vs Gore decision. In his concurrence, Kavanaugh favorably cites the ruling, the first time a justice has done so in a majority opinion or concurrence. The five-justice majority, aware of the illegal and political character of its 2000 decision, ruled that its own decision had no precedential value.

It is the Democrat Party which has made another stolen election possible. In the most immediate sense, they have failed to wage any substantial opposition to Trump’s efforts to nominate the most right-wing justices to the court. Coney Barrett’s confirmation Monday was only possible because the Democratic Party did not spend the political capital required to slow the gears of the parliamentary process for one week, until after election day. Kavanaugh is on the court because the Democrat Party made no effort to expose his right-wing record and instead focused entirely on unproven, decades-old allegations of sexual assault. Clarence Thomas’ confirmation was secured by the narrowest margin in 1991 in large part because Delaware Senator Joe Biden subjected Anita Hill, who had presented concrete evidence that Thomas sexually assaulted her—to humiliating cross-examination during confirmation hearings. But in a larger sense, the Democratic Party is complicit in Trump’s plot to steal the election because they have worked to hide it from the population and to downplay the danger of dictatorship. The Democratic Party is silent on the fascist plans to kidnap and kill sitting governors, they make no issue of Trump’s present efforts to slow the mail, and they appeal for “calm” as Trump openly threatens Democrats with physical violence. The Democrats’ are guided first and foremost by a fear that any reference to defending the most basic democratic rights will trigger a groundswell of opposition from below that they cannot control. Instead they are opposing Trump through methods of palace intrigue, negotiating with generals, financiers and intelligence officials behind the backs of the population.

Prospect of right-wing violence and police repression hangs over US election
Eric London, WSWS, Oct 27 2020

Right-wing protesters at the State Capitol in Lansing, Michigan in an Apr 30
demonstration against Whitmer (Photo: Paul Sancya/AP)

With one week remaining until the US election on Nov 3, additional details are emerging of right-wing plans for election day violence and police preparations for repressing protests on election night. In a motion filed yesterday in the federal case against six of the 14 fascists who plotted to kidnap and kill Michigan’s Democratic governor, Gretchen Whitmer, prosecutors highlighted the timing of the plot:

On multiple occasions, they agreed that the group’s deadline for executing the plot was the Nov 3 2020 national election.

The motion asks for a delay in the case so that prosecution can “determine whether additional federal charges are appropriate” because investigators found “explosive device components” which indicate a wider plot. the motion reads:

Because of the imminent nature of the threat, law enforcement was obliged to arrest the subjects before this evidence could be processed.

Over the weekend, Jackson County Judge Michael Klaeren reduced bail for conspirator Peter Musico from $10 million to $100k, equivalent to a relatively minor felony. Klaeren, who was appointed to his position by then-Governor Jennifer Granholm, a Democrat, called the original bond “grossly excessive” and rejected a request by the prosecution to confine Musico to his home, saying this would make it difficult for Musico to go to work. Musico, a founding member of the Wolverine Watchmen, gave a thumbs up and thanked the judge. Last Friday, reports surfaced that a similar plot, led by an individual active within the Ohio Republican Party, was underway against that state’s Republican governor, Mike DeWine. But despite credible reports that Renea Turner planned to kidnap DeWine from his Cedarville home and place him on trial to kill or “exile” him, police have not filed charges. A report from WHIO notes:

State troopers told News Center 7 they opened an investigation, but declined to comment further.

On Monday afternoon, Turner was allowed to hold a press conference at the state capitol building where she denied plans to kill DeWine but claimed:

85% of Ohioans want him removed. Let’s say 5% of that 85% are skilled marksmen.

Across the country, police departments are also preparing for election day. In Michigan, statewide organizations representing police and sheriffs continue to refuse to abide by state elected officials’ order barring weapons at polling places, a clear nod to militia groups in the state. In New Hampshire, officials announced they would not attempt to keep voters from bringing weapons to the polls. Further anecdotes indicate the police are becoming more brazen about their support for Trump in the days before the election, encouraged by the president’s own statements. A police officer in NYC used his patrol car’s megaphone to broadcast pro-Trump messages to Flatbush residents this weekend. In Florida, a uniformed officer arrived at a polling station last week with a mask that said “Trump.” Eleven people were arrested in NYC Sunday when Trump supporters and protestors began fighting. Police guarded the pro-Trump demonstration and manhandled several anti-Trump protestors. Beginning Monday, the NYPD deployed thousands of cops to patrol over 1.2k polling locations, with the chief explaining that the force is “at the ready” for the prospect of protests. In Washington DC, police have purchased over $100k in additional tear gas canisters. Buzzfeed News reported:

Police Chief Peter Newsham told local lawmakers that in law enforcement circles, ‘it is widely believed there will be civil unrest after the November election regardless of who wins.’

King County, Washington will also deploy guards at ballot boxes. The chief of police in Chicago referenced election demonstrations in the context of anti-police protests in the city earlier this summer. He said:

We have operations in place to ensure that they don’t destroy property, that they don’t cause further violence and that they are held accountable.

In New Jersey, 250 members of the state National Guard will process ballots at the county level, though they will do so in civilian clothes. Several dozen guard soldiers will help with “cyber-security” in North Carolina, while the WaPo reported that states like Kentucky, Nebraska and Wisconsin are also considering deploying the Guard on election day. These deployments show that a substantial police and National Guard presence will be on the ground on election night, when the likelihood of large anti-Trump demonstrations is high. In four battleground states, mail-in ballots cannot be counted before election day. These states are also the linchpin of Trump’s strategy to proclaim “fraud” and challenge results: Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Iowa. In these states, large majorities of mail-in ballots come from Democrats, meaning Trump is likely to jump to an early lead on election night as ballots from election-day voters, who are expected to be mostly Republicans, are counted first. On Monday, the US Supreme Court rejected an effort by Democrats to begin counting mail-in ballots in advance of election day. This lead will erode in the days following the election, giving Trump the opportunity to baselessly claim the election is being stolen from him. Trump may claim victory if early counts show him leading in these states, provoking mass demonstrations and counter-mobilizations by fascist groups that support the president. Police and national security officials are “gaming” plans to crush demonstrations against Trump. In a report published by the right-wing Claremont Institute and Texas Public Policy Foundation, a network of high-level former national security officials and police leaders write:

There is an increased chance of urban unrest, especially in jurisdictions where local and state officials are reluctant to maintain order.

The report “games” the prospect of large-scale social mobilizations and predicts a massive police crackdown. The report says that in the early morning hours of Nov 4, the day after the election, police will conduct widespread raids on the homes of left-wing opponents of Trump, suggesting:

There will be over one thousand arrest warrants issued using federal and state statutes from RICO to disorderly conduct with coordinated pre-dawn warrant executions nationwide. The decision to obtain arrest warrants even for the barest minimum of probable cause on the lowest of charges is meant to remove the players from the picture, at least temporarily.

The report predicts that police departments will rebel against Democrat elected officials in cities like Chicago, Portland, Los Angeles and New York as police suppress protests, and that officers assigned to guard Democratic mayors will call in sick, abandoning their posts. The report also references the likelihood of police mobilizing fascist vigilantes:

Riot control efforts continue throughout the country. There are rumors that several sheriffs in conservative counties throughout the country are hinting that they may deputize regular citizens into posses should the lawlessness come to their counties. Social media is ablaze with volunteers from Proud Boys, Three Percenters, and Oath Keepers and other Posse Comitatus groups to form posses.

This is the scenario for which the extreme right is preparing. As Trump moves forward with his right-wing strategy and threatens violence against sitting governors in his stump speeches, the Democrat Party responds with meaningless appeals for “calm.” Its greatest fear is that opposition to Trump and his attempt to steal the election will develop into a mass movement outside its control.

Questions remain as to ties between police, border militias and Trump campaign in southwest US
Chase Lawrence, WSWS, Oct 27 2020

United Constitutional Patriots, a militia based on the Mexican border.
(Photo: SPLC)

In the aftermath of a plot by far-right militia men to kidnap and kill the governors of Michigan and Virginia, more details are emerging of the network of right-wing groups along the US-Mexico border in the states of Texas, Arizona and New Mexico. Arizona and Texas are battleground states in this year’s election between Trump and Biden. Since Trump has appealed to militia and fascist supporters to help carry out his plot to remain in power no matter the outcome of the popular vote, it is necessary to take a closer look at the presence and political connections of militias in the American Southwest. A Sep 29 FBI report from the Dallas, Texas bureau noted that leading up to the November election, right-wing extremist groups including “boogaloo adherents” and “militia violent extremists” are increasing “violent and criminal activity” in the Southwest. Many of these militia groups have ties to the police.

At the center of the right-wing network in the border states is Joe Arpaio, the fascist sheriff who set up a self-proclaimed “concentration camp” for immigrants along the border and was pardoned by Trump in 2017 after being convicted of contempt of court for refusing to stop his department from racially profiling Latinos. Trump has called Arpaio a “patriot.” Arpaio has spoken at numerous campaign rallies for Trump and has been busy building support for Trump’s presidency across the region. Arpaio has close ties to various right-wing groups, including the Three Percenters and Oath Keepers. The land in Wisconsin where the Wolverine Watchmen trained for their plot to kill Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer was owned by a member of both the Three Percenters and the Oath Keepers, while conspiracy leader Adam Fox was reportedly a leader of Michigan’s Three Percenters.

The Oath Keepers are closely connected to the fascist Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association (CSPOA), which was founded by Arpaio and former Graham County, Arizona Sheriff Richard Mack, who is also a founding board member of the Oath Keepers. In 2006 Mack ran for US Senate as a libertarian. In 2012 and 2018, Mack ran in and lost Republican primaries for congress in Texas and Arizona, respectively. Mack is also a long-time member and leader in the National Rifle Association, and has been featured multiple times on Alex Jones’ show Prison Planet. He also was a speaker at the far-right Red Pill Expo. Oath Keepers’ founder Stewart Rhodes was one of the speakers at the 2019 CSPOA conference. The CSPOA signed a joint letter to sheriffs around the country as part of the Liberty Group Coalition, which is comprised of the Gun Owners of America, Oath Keepers, the John Birch Society, Tenth Amendment Center and other organizations. The letter was prompted by a proposed gun control bill by the Democrats, and was a page-long tirade centered around the Second Amendment being taken away by Americans’ “succumbing” to the temptation to “fundamentally change America into another socialistic regime.” Arpaio is directly connected to these individuals.

Arpaio’s connections to the Trump administration are well-established. In Mar 2018, Arpaio held a pro-Trump rally in Prescott, Arizona, where the Oath Keepers showed up to serve as a security detail. Arpaio was shouted down from the stage by students decrying his ties to the Oath Keepers. In the last six months, the CSPOA has actively sought to build a network of police who refuse to enforce governors’ orders on mask mandates and other anti-coronavirus measures. Mack was a speaker at an anti-mask rally in Scottsdale, Arizona, in June where he declared the CSPOA’s opposition to masks. He said:

We do have a pandemic in America and in Arizona. But it’s not the coronavirus. The pandemic is one of universal corruption. The pandemic is one of the destruction of our Constitution.

In July, Mack also held a pay-per-view virtual seminar coaching attendees on how police can oppose mask mandates, advertising on the CSPOA website:

Are You Ready To Create A Liberty Movement With Us? End Tyranny In Your City & State. Help Restore Liberty Across The Country. End Mandated Masks. End Mandated Vaccines.

Mack’s references to “Ending Tyranny” closely mirror statements of the Michigan conspirators against Governor Whitmer. The CSPOA is particularly strong in the Southwest. Almost all of New Mexico’s sheriffs have aligned themselves with the CSPOA. From 2013 to 2019, 29 of New Mexico’s 33 sheriff departments participated in CSPOA activities and many have also attended meetings with other extreme right-wing groups like the John Birch Society and the Oath Keepers. The Oath Keepers, to whom Arpaio is associated, has encouraged its members to donate to the Arizona Border Recon (AZBR) and has featured interviews with leaders of militia groups such as AZBR and others. AZBR patrols the US-Mexico border and terrorizes immigrants.

2eb57b3e-bb37-4a6a-bfd2-8af8d8b9ee07Tim Foley, Kellyanne Conway

AZBR was founded by Tim Foley in 2011. Foley, in an interview with USA Today, stated that a majority of volunteers have experience in military and law enforcement. AZBR’s website states under the “Who We Are” section that they “provide intelligence and security services in partnership with the United States Customs and Border Patrol.” Foley was one of the featured speakers at the “Trump Unity Rally” in 2018 which also featured Arpaio. The Oath Keepers were one of the two militias that provided security for the rally, the other being the Arizona Liberty Guard (ALG). ALG has also showed up to other Trump rallies such as the “March 4 Trump” in Phoenix in 2017. In Sep 2018 Foley gave a speech outside of the US capitol along with Arpaio, presidential adviser Kellyanne Conway, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and others in a “Angel Families” anti-immigration event. The border militias have trained thousands of vigilantes who have the same fundamental outlook as the Michigan plotters. These connections only raise further questions about the ties of far-right groups across the US.

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