The Right Goes Full Conspiracy Theorist On Paul Pelosi Attack

by | Oct 31, 2022 | Politics

Some Republicans and their far-right allies are spreading wild conspiracy theories about the attack on Paul Pelosi, Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Calif.) husband, including baselessly claiming the assault involved “a gay lovers sex quarrel.”Paul Pelosi, 82, remains hospitalized with skull fractures after an assailant attacked him with a hammer on Friday in the Pelosis’ San Francisco home. The man allegedly brought zip ties to the scene and asked, “Where is Nancy?” The speaker was in Washington, D.C., at the time. AdvertisementPolice identified 42-year-old David DePape as the suspected assailant and said there was “nothing to suggest” the two men knew each other. Police Chief William Scott said DePape forced his way into the home and deliberately attacked Pelosi.“This was not a random act,” Scott said. “This was intentional.”DePape himself essentially debunked the conspiracy theories in his conversations with law enforcement agents after the incident took place, according to an FBI summary released on Monday. DePape told police he wanted to hold Nancy Pelosi hostage and break her kneecaps, adding that he viewed the speaker “as the ‘leader of the pack’ of lies told by the Democratic Party.”But that hasn’t stopped lies from spreading about the attack. Royce White, the Republican candidate running to unseat Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), tweeted that Pelosi’s husband “was assaulted during a gay lovers sex quarrel.” Rep. Clay Higgins (R-La.) tweeted and then deleted a post that called Pelosi’s attacker a “male prostitute.” There is no evidence to back up these claims. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) fanned the flames by sharing a post by a conservative influencer that said “none of us will ever know for sure” what happened during the attack and that it was absurd to paint a “hippie nudist from Berkeley” as a “militant right winger.” AdvertisementDePape, who witnesses have described as shy and unstable, was once involved in nudist activism, according to earlier news stories. But more recent online posts that appear to belong to DePape include fantastical images alongside references to right-wing conspiracy theories about voter fraud and secret pedophile rings. Police said he had no fixed address. Some Democrats have indeed blamed Republican rhetoric for the attack.“Turn on rightwing media on any given day or night. You will see frothing hosts shrieking unspeakable lies and unfounded conspiracy theories about women, religious and ethnic minorities, city residents, young people, and scores of others Americans,” Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-N.J.) said Friday. “That some are radicalized to commit unspeakable violence against their perceived enemies …

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