Idaho State Rep. Bryan Zollinger is facing criticism for posting a story on Facebook suggesting that former President Obama and other top Democrats like billionaire George Soros and Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe were part of a conspiracy to orchestrate the violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., as part of a plot to take down President Trump, the Post Register reported.
The story claims that Obama “set up a war room in his D.C. home to plan and execute resistance to the Trump administration.” That claim, however, has been widely and easily debunked.
“So were the events of Saturday the result of a despicable plan to further undermine Trump?” the author wrote. “There was plenty of time and Charlottesville is the ‘capital of resistance.’ If it was, it was evil and deadly and the people involved need to be prosecuted. Or is this a wild conspiracy theory? Perhaps. But the pieces fit.”
“Bryan, you have to know this is crazy, right?” one commenter wrote on Zollinger’s post.
“I’m not saying it is true, but I am suggesting that it is completely plausible,” Zollinger responded, adding that “many of the protesters were Soros-funded.”
In an interview with the Idaho Statesman, Zollinger said he hadn’t meant to offend anyone with the post, and that on further reflection, its claims are “probably wrong.” He continued to describe the claims as “plausible,” however.
“In hindsight, maybe it was a mistake to post it,” Zollinger said. “I didn’t mean for it to ruffle any feathers.”
Dr. Sarah Haynes didn’t mince words when sharing her thoughts on Rep. Zollinger.
“Please, in the future, keep your stupidity and bigotry to yourself,” Haynes wrote in an op-ed for the Times-News. “Idahoans don’t need you to reinforce stereotypes of our white supremacist/Nazi history.”
“Take yourself to the nearest psychiatrist. You urgently need help.”
Trump faced harsh criticism for his initial response to the violence, when he blamed “many sides” for the deadly violence and before reigniting the debate over his hesitance to condemn white supremacists after telling reporters there is “blame on both sides,” asking them “what about the alt-left that came charging at the alt-right?”