Port: Republicans apparently standing behind candidates who were members of bigoted messaging group


MINOT, N.D. — Back in August I reported on the profligate use of racial and homophobic slurs, as well as the presence of white supremacist and antisemitic tropes, in a messaging group organized by the North Dakota Young Republicans.

The NDYR represents the very extreme, very Trump wing of the North Dakota Republican Party. Many of its members are also ardent supporters of former Republican Rick Becker, who left the party after losing the NDGOP’s endorsement for his U.S. Senate campaign (he’s now pursuing that campaign as an independent).

The list of prominent candidates, elected officials, and activists involved in that messaging group, is a long one (including Becker’s campaign manager and a close adviser) , and when the news broke, many Republicans at least seemed to take the revelations seriously.

These are people who help write our laws. They’re candidates for elected office. They’re politicos who shape our state’s politics. How they were behaving in that messaging group was a big deal.

“The NDGOP flatly condemns the offensive statements made by a group of Young Republicans this week on their chat platform,” the North Dakota Republican Party said in a statement responding to my report . “We have always encouraged diversity of thought and respectful discourse, along with respect for our political opponents. What we saw this week does not stand in any way, with the views of the NDGOP or the Republican Party.”

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