This Is What Happens When Elections Go Uncontested
A participant in the 2017 “Unite the Right” white supremacist rally in Charlottesville has just been elected to public office in Washington State. 22-year-old YouTube personality James Allsup is now a precinct committee officer and an official representative of the Republican Party after his candidacy went uncontested.
Allsup was the former president of the Washington State University College Republicans, but stepped down after his participation in the Charlottesville rally, which saw one counter-protestor, Heather Heyer, killed. Allsup is a member of the anti-immigration, white supremacist group Identity Evropa, an official hate group according to the SPLC and an Anti-Defamation League terrorist organization. They’re the ones who created the antisemitic slogan heard and seen on banners at Charlottesville, “Jews will not replace us.”
The RNC has denounced Allsup’s “hateful, racist views” and the Washington State Republican Party’s chairman condemned his “identity politics,” but Allsup has made it clear he’s not looking to be embraced by the GOP, but to shift it as far right as possible.
In a recent Identity Evropa podcast, Allsup said his plan is to push “our” agenda, rather than the Republican Party’s. His position may not be very high up the political hierarchy, but PCO–a frequently uncontested position– is a political entry point that allows access to far more influential roles. As The Daily Beast reports, this isn’t Allsup’s first time using (and succeeding) with “entryist tactics.” He had previously described his “takeover” of his college Republican Club to the white nationalist podcast “Fash the Nation,” advising other students to gather their “fashy goy” (fascist, non-Jewish) friends together and join their own campus club in an effort to use their numbers to “move it to essentially being an alt-right club.”
That’s what he says he plans to do now with local politics. On that Identity Evropa podcast, he talked about becoming an elected official. “You have a seat at the table,” he said. “And that’s the most important thing, getting that seat at the table, and you can get that seat at the table by, yes, showing up, yes, by bringing people in, and again this doesn’t necessarily only have to be IE members.”
But again, it’s not GOP politics he’s interested in pushing. “Of course I’m not the GOP shill here,” he said. “I’m not going to tell you that knocking doors for a Republican congressman is going to save the West or save European Americans. That’s not at all what I’m saying, but it is a means to an end. This political involvement is a means to our political ends.”
Even on an immediate level, ignoring his hopes to grow his local party’s white nationalist numbers, Allsup is a dangerous person to have in his position. The precinct committee officer (in most states, known as a precinct captain or chairman) is meant to establish a direct link between voters of a specific precinct and their party. They’re responsible for get-out-the-vote efforts, as well as relaying to the party issues that are particularly important to voters in their district. They can also vote in endorsement meetings, where local parties choose which candidates and ballot initiatives to endorse.
Neo-nazi James Allsup now has those responsibilities and privileges.
This guy, with his Cabaret references (I assume).
With his racism.
With his anti-immigration stances.
With all of this bullshit.
Running for office isn’t for everyone. If you’re not interested or able, there’s no shame there. But if you’ve ever had the tiniest of inklings that maybe you’d be interested in checking out your options but you’ve been held back by fear or insecurity or a belief maybe you’re not qualified, let James Allsup be your guide. Because if he can do it, you can do it. And if he will do it, maybe you should.
It’s also a great reminder that getting into politics doesn’t mean immediately running for Congress or State Senate. It can, sure, but there are also tons of uber-local positions that need filling. (Precinct Captain, for example usually only covers a few blocks of a neighborhood.)
Let’s not let our own neighborhoods’ James Allsups run uncontested.
(via The Daily Beast, image: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)
Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!
—The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]