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After Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) was spotted walking with right-wing troll and Holocaust denier Chuck Johnson in the Capitol, the congressman is denying that he knows anything about Johnson’s “previous associations.”
Huffington Post reporter Matt Fuller first posted a photo of the two with Rep. Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) on Wednesday.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but is that Chuck C. Johnson walking with Reps. Phil Roe and Andy Harris?
Both waited for him to get through security. pic.twitter.com/ybfdK8Bwqy
— Matt Fuller (@MEPFuller) January 16, 2019
In a statement to Talking Points Memo, Harris’ office confirmed that he took a meeting with Johnson, but that he didn’t know his views, saying they discussed “genetic sequencing.”
“I am unaware of his previous associations, but we had a discussion involving his business with genetic sequencing,” a statement from Harris’ office read. “Of course I disavow and condemn white supremacy and anti-Semitism.”
Johnson, who attended the State of the Union last year with Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fl.), was permanently banned from Twitter for threatening to “take out” Black Lives Matter organizer DeRay Mckessson. In a Reddit AMA, Johnson questioned the Holocaust; he also has associations with the neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer, according to the Daily Beast.
Johnson’s presence in the Capitol comes just after the House voted to reprimand Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) over his comments about white supremacy. Both Roe and Harris voted in favor of the measure condemning white supremacy.
David Covucci is the Layer 8 editor at the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the web. His work has appeared in Vice, the Huffington Post, Jezebel, Gothamist, and other publications. He is particularly interested in hearing any tips you have. Reach out at [email protected]