Marjorie Taylor Greene, Dr. Oz, and Matt Gaetz.

Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC-BY-SA) Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC-BY-SA) Dr. Mehmet Oz/Facebook (Fair Use)

Dirty Delete: Midterm candidates include conspiracy theorists, election fraud liars, and far-right whackos

With the midterms approaching, this week's column will focus on the wildest candidates on the ballot.


Claire Goforth


Posted on Oct 28, 2022   Updated on Oct 29, 2022, 6:03 am CDT

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Dirty Delete


Since launching this column, I’ve covered the online footprints of the biggest extremists, liars, and conspiracy theorists in politics.

With the midterms approaching, these next two weeks will focus on the wildest candidates on the ballot.

Today’s subject matter: congressional cranks.

QAnon followers believe the planet is controlled by a cabal of Satanists who rape kids, wear their flesh, and are addicted to a chemical harvested from their brains. Believing such nonsense should ideally disqualify a person from holding office.

Unfortunately for America, Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) proved in 2020 that people will vote for candidates who follow a conspiracy theory with roots in Pizzagate.

The original QAnon duo may soon become a whole-ass QAnon caucus.

Congressional candidates who’ve espoused QAnon include Rep. Mayra Flores (R-Texas) and Johnny Teague, also of Texas; Charlotte Bergmann of Tennessee; and Jo Rae Perkins, the Oregon Republican who, if elected, would be the first QAnon follower in the United States Senate.

For a full rundown of QAnon candidates for Congress, check out this piece by Media Matters.

The midterms see Sarah Palin reentering the political arena running for Congress in Alaska. Palin is the real-life embodiment of Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ character on Veep, a walking talking parody of herself who inspired some of the earliest memes.

Dr. Mehmet Oz is another lowlight on the ballot. Oz, the Republican nominee for Senate in Pennsylvania, has a lengthy history of poop tweets and hawking “miracle” cures. More recently the multimillionaire has tried to appeal to us little people by whining about the price of crudité.

Markwayne Mullin is running for Senate in Oklahoma. Mullin’s internet history includes election fraud lies, hypocritical positions on socialism (bad for you; good for him), and pearl-clutching about cow farts. Seriously.

Then there’s Herschel Walker, Georgia’s Republican Senate candidate. Walker’s got such a loose relationship with the truth that he even lies about lying. He also claims to be anti-choice but has no problem getting his girlfriends abortions (which he denies FWIW).

A compilation of congressional quacks wouldn’t be complete without Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), who’s an evil genius at trolling but not so adept at avoiding being investigated for sexually trafficking a minor (which he denies).

Let us not forget Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), a representative so thirsty for power she echoed the racist replacement theory in campaign ads this cycle. She may soon be joined by Karoline Leavitt, who worked for both Stefanik and Trump and has emulated the latter in her quest to represent New Hampshire in Congress.

Why it matters

These people are conspiracy theorists, liars, and extremists. Some of them are already among the most powerful people in the United States. Others are aspiring to be.

Next week we’ll delve into candidates for state office who should give you the chills.

Happy Halloween, citizens of the web.

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*First Published: Oct 28, 2022, 6:00 am CDT