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Texas GOP gubernatorial candidate says he won’t fire staffer tied to white nationalist movement

Republican gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines, shown at a Dec. 16 appearance in Bandera, said...
Republican gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines, shown at a Dec. 16 appearance in Bandera, said Wednesday he would not fire staffer Jake Lloyd Colglazier, adding that his campaign “will not participate in cancel culture.”(Kaylee Greenlee for The Texas Tribune)
Published: Jan. 20, 2022 at 6:55 PM CST
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By Emily Hernandez, The Texas Tribune

Jan. 20, 2022

Texas GOP gubernatorial candidate says he won’t fire staffer tied to white nationalist movement” was first published by The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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Republican gubernatorial candidate Don Huffines said Wednesday he will not fire a campaign staffer who said on his YouTube channel in 2020 that he wants to “restore historical American culture” by “maintaining a supermajority of the original stock of the United States, and maintaining a homogeneity,” referring to white people.

The staffer, Jake Lloyd Colglazier, has previously done fieldwork for the campaign, Huffines said, adding that he will not take any action against Colglazier.

On his YouTube channel, Colglazier warned that “we’re nearing the demographic cliff,” a reference to an increase of people of color gaining more political and economic power. On another livestream platform, he mocked a woman who appears to be Asian, saying she needed to be in China “getting the shit beat out of her by her husband.” In another post, he said, “I spit on George Floyd.”

“If I were to go through the social media history of any young Texan I would find something I disagree with,” Huffines said in an emailed statement. “My campaign will not participate in cancel culture.”

Huffines did not respond to questions about whether he condemned Colglazier’s comments or whether he condemned white nationalism.

Colglazier, 24, a self-proclaimed “American nationalist,” previously worked for the far-right conspiracy site Infowars, owned by Alex Jones. While at InfoWars, he interviewed white supremacists such as Vincent James Foxx, who founded the now-banned alt-right Red Elephants site, and Faith Goldy, a conspiracy theorist who was fired from a conservative Canadian website for talking on a podcast hosted by the neo-Nazi website Daily Stormer.

Political Research Associates, a social justice think tank, first reported evidence of Colglazier’s connections to the “America First/Groyper” movement on Friday. So-called Groypers make up an alt-right network of people who advocate for a majority white, Christian nation and identify as American nationalists. They coalesce around their support of Nick Fuentes, a white supremist podcaster who has been banned from Twitter, YouTube and the streaming platform DLive for violating hate speech policies.

Until Friday, the True Texas Project, a conservative nonprofit, had a biography for Colglazier on its website that identified him as “currently the Deputy Communications Director for the Don Huffines for Governor campaign.” That sentence has since been removed, and the True Texas Project did not respond to a request for comment.

Huffines, a former state senator from Dallas, said in his Wednesday statement that Colglazier is not his deputy communications director, but acknowledged he’s done work for the campaign.

America First started as a conservative TV commentary series by Fuentes. With episode titles such as “Combating Anti-White Hatred,” “Diversity Is Code for Anti White” and “Modernity Kills Women,” the series also boasted guests including Foxx, Goldy and Patrick Casey, a leader in the Groyper white nationalist movement. The show also featured Colglazier, who went by Jake Lloyd at the time, on an episode about Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Colglazier was one of three speakers at an America First conference in December 2019, when he called on the Groypers, to overtake the country’s conservative party.

“The greater political establishment of the United States will crumble at the hands of the Groypers. … History will remember the Groypers and the movement that followed, that flowed from America First,” Colglazier said at the conference.

Colglazier could not be reached for comment.

Regardless of his staff position, Colglazier publicly remains a strong supporter of Huffines for governor, as he said in a December interview with Current Revolt and as seen in his Twitter profile.

Huffines is running to the right of Gov. Greg Abbott, whom he criticizes frequently for not being conservative enough. Among Huffines’ top campaign platforms are bans on critical race theory and building a wall at the Texas-Mexico border to try to block illegal immigration.

Abbott did not respond to a request for comment.

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at https://www.texastribune.org/2022/01/20/don-huffines-staffer-white-nationalist-ties/.

The Texas Tribune is a member-supported, nonpartisan newsroom informing and engaging Texans on state politics and policy. Learn more at texastribune.org.

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