Mike Pence Can't Go Anywhere Without Being Asked About QAnon, Satanic Cannibal Pedophiles
This morning, Vice President Mike Pence made the rounds on a few networks to discuss a variety of topics, including Steve Bannon's arrest, mail-in voting and, yes, the QAnon conspiracy theory. His line, across these appearances, was that he "doesn't know anything about it," that he "dismisses it out of hand," and that he was disappointed that major networks devoted time to that instead of talking about other things he thought were more important.
On "CBS This Morning," host Tony Dokoupil noted that one of the problems in this country was that we simply do not have a shared reality (to put it lightly). Dokoupil then asked if we could all simply agree that QAnon and the Satanic Pedophile Cannibal Cabal that is harvesting adrenochrome from the pineal glands of children in order to get high and live forever are not real things. He asked Pence to explicitly denounce the theory, which Pence seemed to have trouble doing.
Vice President Mike Pence on Steve Bannon's arrest, QAnon and mail-in voting youtu.be
Eventually, Dokoupil successfully pushed Pence to say that he dismissed the theory "out of hand." He did not, however, explicitly say "this is not real and this is not happening," and until both he and Trump say that, it will only add fuel to the fire. Pence also denied that his refusal to address the conspiracy was adding fuel to the fire.
During another interview this morning with CNN's John Berman, Pence was asked about Trump's embrace of the conspiracy theory, and, again, about whether or not he believed it himself. Pence again denied knowing anything about it and said that Trump didn't embrace the theory, but that he only appreciates that the believers support him.
Berman to Pence: How can you not know about QAnon? youtu.be
Via Daily Beast:
"This is a group that peddles theories that say that some politicians and high-profile Hollywood celebrities are members of a satanic cult, that are also cannibals," Berman continued. "They say that coronavirus is being disseminated by George Soros and Bill Gates with the help of 5G networks. The president says they 'love America.' So how do those beliefs embody a love of America?"
"You said the president seemed to embrace that," Pence replied, clearly annoyed with the question. "I didn't hear that. I heard the president talk about, he appreciates people who support him."
"Do you believe they love America?" Berman asked Pence directly. When the vice president claimed to not "know anything about that conspiracy theory," the host shot back, "How can you not know about it, given how much it's been in the news? How can you not know about it at this point?"
Pence then claimed that "we dismiss conspiracy theorists out of hand" in the Trump White House, but as he desperately tried to pivot the conversation away from QAnon, Berman wouldn't let him.
Pence is trying to blow this shit off like it doesn't matter, but it does matter. It matters when there are millions of members of these groups on Facebook, it matters when people take this seriously enough to regularly commit crimes because they believe in it so deeply.
Perhaps you are wondering right now if this is the kind of thing that would affect belief in QAnon. It is not. Pence is "not trusted" by QAnon people who believe he was "forced" on Trump by the RNC "as a back-up plan against Trump." This was the popular take on a thread about the CNN interview on the Voat "Q Research" forum.
Pence, frankly, does not have the power to stop this. Arguably, no one besides Trump does. Anyone who isn't Trump is going to get called a shill, a member of the Deep State, etc. etc.
The fact is, Donald Trump has the power to stop all of this and he chooses not to, because, as he says, they "love" him. Families are being torn apart, people are going off the deep end, and this is not going to end well. He is willing to let that happen, to let this craziness continue, because he just wants to be loved.
In fact, Trump's refusal to help put an end to this, to directly and explicitly say it is not true, makes him complicit in any crimes committed by followers of Q. But ideally, it is being made clear that no one in his administration is going anywhere without being asked about this and that they will be asked about this until Trump does something to stop it.
If I were queen — which, sadly, I am not — you know what I would do? I'd sit Trump down in an interview not with someone who opposes him, but with one of the biggest believers in this bullshit. Give them the chance to get Trump to confirm, or deny, everything they believe. Let them ask all of their questions, the things they and their fellow dipshits really want to know. Because it's one thing for him, for them, to be asked about these things by reporters, it's another thing to be asked about them by a devoted believer who adores him.
If it is possible, at this point, to debunk any of this shit in the minds of these believers, that would be the way to do it.
Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. In addition to her work at Wonkette, she also has a biweekly column at Dame. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse