House condemns fringe QAnon conspiracy theory movement

The House Republican Conference has grappled with how to handle the influx of GOP congressional candidates who support far-right conspiracy theories espoused by QAnon, including Marjorie Taylor Greene, who won her Georgia primary in August. Party leaders were initially slow to denounce the movement, though they have since made clear that QAnon has no place in the Republican Party. President Donald Trump, by contrast, has said he “appreciates” the support from QAnon adherents.

The measure — which condemns QAnon and rejects the conspiracy theories it promotes — took an unsettling turn after the resolution’s chief sponsor, freshman Rep. Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.), received death threats after an online attack from QAnon.

Malinowski was targeted after the House GOP’s campaign arm began running attack ads falsely accusing him of lobbying to protect sexual predators, echoing baseless conspiracy theories promoted by QAnon. The group believes Trump is secretly battling a cabal of Satan worshiping child sex traffickers who work in the “deep state” of his administration.

“I think they knew exactly what they were doing. They knew they were playing with fire,” Malinowski told BuzzFeed News, referring to the NRCC’s attack ads.

After passing the resolution condemning QAnon, House lawmakers — who are supposed to start their October recess — were sent home. But they may be called back to town if congressional leaders and the White House reach a deal on a coronavirus aid package next week.