Can a conservative activist completely un-personed by Big Tech win a congressional seat the old-fashioned way? Conservative activist Laura Loomer is making it look likelier by the day.
Despite being home to President Donald Trump when he is not at the White House, Florida’s 21st congressional district is heavily Democratic. Incumbent Representative Lois Frankel first won election here in 2012 and has not faced a serious challenge since, running unopposed in 2018.
And while the district voted 59 percent for Hillary Clinton in 2016, would-be Republican candidate Laura Loomer’s internal polling shows her with an astonishing nine-point lead over Frankel with fewer than five months before the election.
Loomer gained notoriety in conservative circles for her work with James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas exposing corruption, fraud, and dishonesty on the left.
Despite gaining more than 260,000 followers on Twitter, the social media platform banned Loomer in 2018 after she criticized Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar. In an apparent double standard, Representative Omar routinely makes derogatory comments about Jews and white people yet enjoys full access to her own Twitter account.
While many conservatives complain about tech censorship, Loomer decided to do something about it. In August 2019, she announced her run for Congress.
Running for elected office is far more difficult than running a social media account.
It involves raising money, knocking on doors, meeting people, and convincing them to come out and cast their votes for you.
For nearly a year now, Loomer has been doing just that. She has out-raised the incumbent Democrat in every month of the year thus far.
While Twitter has habitually banned conservative commentators and activists for years, the fact that Loomer is now running for Congress creates a new problem for the social media giant.
By banning Loomer but allowing her opponent free access to the site, Twitter is explicitly taking sides in a political contest.
Loomer’s campaign filed an FEC complaint over the issue, calling it an in-kind contribution to Representative Frankel’s campaign: “It’s time to challenge Twitter and put an end to what amounts to blatant election interference,” the candidate said.
Despite her surge in the polls, Loomer has yet to receive support from the National Republican Congressional Committee.
The NRCC, which is “devoted to increasing the number of Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives,” has been spending money in other Florida districts but not the 21st.
Javier Manjarres of The Floridian reached out to the NRCC for comment but received no reply.
Donald Trump – who in addition to being the President of the United States is also a resident of the 21st district – has signal boosted Loomer’s campaign on Twitter.
BEATING THE CENSORS.
Laura Loomer calls herself “the most banned woman in America.”
In addition to Twitter, she has been banned from Facebook, Instagram, and Medium, not to mention ride-sharing platforms Uber and Lyft as well as payment processors PayPal and Venmo. This coordinated censorship has forced her to look for alternative platforms.
On the free speech platform Parler, founded as an alternative to Twitter in 2018, Loomer has over 278,000 followers.
Many conservatives fear that mainstream social media platforms will ramp up their censorship of right-wing figures as we get closer to Election Day in November.
Just this week, Twitter banned shock jock Katie Hopkins, meme-maker Carpe Donktum, and even National Pulse Editor-In-Chief Raheem Kassam.
“Censorship is inherently un-American,” Loomer said in a statement.
“The American people don’t like being told what they can and can’t say. As a result, my campaign is appealing to not only constituents in FL-21, but to Americans in all 50 states who have donated to my campaign and are now watching my race in anticipation to see if the most banned woman in the world can get elected to the US Congress while being universally deplatformed.”
Loomer even has a message for the president, who found himself targeted by Twitter’s censorship team this week.
“Twitter’s grand finale ban will be President Trump,” Loomer wrote on her Parler account Tuesday evening.
“President Trump really needs to get on Parler and Gab ASAP before Silicon Valley literally steals the election for the Democrats.”
Florida’s congressional primary is August 18, and Loomer is the heavy favorite to represent the GOP in November.
“My race is truly historic,” Loomer said on Tuesday.
“Not only will my victory be a huge blow to cancel culture, but when I win, I’ll be the youngest woman ever elected to the US Congress, a testament to the fact that the American dream is still alive and well as long as we continue to fight to protect America and our God given rights, which includes the First Amendment.”