Desperate for electoral victory, extremists craft insurgent strategy

John Locher / AP Members of the Proud Boys cheer on stage as they and other right-wing demonstrators rally, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Portland, Ore. Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021 | 2 a.m. Imagine the 2024 presidential election has ended in much the same way as the 2020 vote, triggering efforts by Republicans in several states to overturn outcomes based on false claims of widespread voter fraud. But this time, GOP sheriffs of those states begin deputizing civilian posses loaded with volunteers from the Proud Boys and other violent groups as muscle for the cause. This isn’t dystopian fiction. It’s an idea dreamed up by the Claremont Institute, a far-right think tank, during a war-games exercise it conducted to imagine the aftermath of the 2020 election. And now Claremont may be working to make the vision of sanctioned political shock troops a reality. Its report, titled “79 Days to Inauguration,” reads like a how-to manual for extremist Republicans to succeed in 2024 where they failed last year. Written days before the 2020 election and assuming a Biden win, it’s presented as an academic exercise but seems designed to give supporters of Donald Trump ideas on how to silence or remove anyone standing in his way and return him to office, such as sheriffs deputizing “volunteers from Proud Boys, Three Percenters, Oath Keepers and other Posse Comitatus groups” to attack the opposition under the guise of protecting communities against civil unrest. What a nightmarish thought: armed white nationalists roaming the […]

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