illustration of a hand pushing down on children

kendallybrown/Twitter Remix by Max Fleishman

‘In the running for biggest moron in Congress’: Republican shares quote thinking it’s by Voltaire, but is actually from a neo-Nazi

Rep. Thomas Massie is being criticized for sharing the misattributed quote.


Samira Sadeque


Posted on Jan 31, 2022   Updated on Feb 7, 2022, 10:14 am CST

Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) is getting roasted on Twitter for sharing what he thought was a quote by French philosopher Voltaire, but was actually said by a neo-Nazi white supremacist. 

The quote, which has in the past been mistakenly attributed to Voltaire, reads: “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” 

The photo also shows a hand in a shirt, with a glowing ring on one finger, pressing its palms down on a crowd of cowering skeletons. 

The quote was actually said by white supremacist and Holocaust denier Kevin Alfred Strom, as has been previously reported. The quote was fact-checked by USA Today last year.

The image was created in 1912 as an anti-child labor cartoon. In the original image, a text on the sleeve read: “child labor employer,” which appears to have been edited out of the image Massie shared. 

Massie, who is no stranger to being criticized online, shared the quote on Sunday along with a dig at Dr. Anthony Fauci. 

“You mustn’t question Fauci, for he is science,” he wrote, adding the photo with the misattributed quote.

Shortly after Massie posted the tweet, many people online pointed out the irony of pairing an anti-child labor cartoon with quote from Strom, who has reportedly been convicted of possession of child pornography

By posting the misattributed quote, some internet users said that Massie was “in the running for biggest moron in Congress.”

Some commented on his glaring lack of understanding of the concept of research. 

“Maybe try googling Voltaire,” wrote one person in a tweet.


Massie has been on the bandwagon of trolls targeting Fauci for some time. 

In April, he cosponsored The “Fire Fauci Act”, a bill with conspiracy theory touting Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) to have Fauci fired for earning more than the president

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*First Published: Jan 31, 2022, 12:30 pm CST