How Paul Gosar emerged as a far-right favorite and subsequently the "most dangerous man in Congress"

“We no longer have an ability to make a clear delineation between the right and far-right in the Republican party”

By Meaghan Ellis

Published January 28, 2022 4:30AM (EST)

Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., objects to Arizonas Electoral College votes certification for Joe Biden during a joint session of Congress in the House chamber on Wednesday, January 6, 2021. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., objects to Arizonas Electoral College votes certification for Joe Biden during a joint session of Congress in the House chamber on Wednesday, January 6, 2021. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on AlterNet.

Over the last two years, Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.) has emerged as a heavy favorite among far-right conservatives. As an avid supporter of former President Donald Trump, Gosar has managed to gain more than 90 endorsements as the midterm election season approaches.

During a recent rally, Gosar spoke before a crowd of right-wing supporters as he declared to be "considered the most dangerous man in Congress."

"This is where it all began," Gosar said prior to Trump taking the stage. "This is where we questioned: 'Was there fraud? Absolutely. Was it enough to overturn the election? Absolutely.'"

At the same event, per The Guardian, the Republican lawmaker also echoed the stance of other right-wingers who have criticized critical race theory (CRT), the military and food shortages. Last but not least, he pivoted toward a Trump favorite: voter fraud and illegitimate elections.


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So what makes Gosar different from other Trump-supporting Republicans?

Per The Guardian, Gosar is "the kind of politician that Trump – who is embarking on a series of rallies to try to cement his allies' power in the Republican party – is increasingly seeking to support."

"Gosar has extensive links to white nationalists and Capitol rioters and, many observers say, represents a dangerous new breed of Republican politician, who would have once been considered fringe, but whom Trump is increasingly making central to Republican party politics."

Joe Lowndes, a political science professor at the University of Oregon who also co-authored the book "Producers, Parasites, Patriots: Race and the New Right-Wing Politics of Precarity," weighed in on the rise of Gosar. "We no longer have an ability to make a clear delineation between the right and far-right in the Republican party," said Lowndes.

He went on to explain how Gosar's rise underscores the problem within the Republican Party as Trump-like figures are taking center stage. The issue appears to be one that Republicans will be haunted by for quite some time.

"The Trumpist wing of the Republicans isn't just ascending – it's the dominant wing of the Republican party. It's the dominant wing not just in national politics, but in state and local politics as well," said Lowndes. "The Republican Party has committed itself to a party of minoritarian rule, figuring out ways to rule in the long term without having majority support of voters."

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Meaghan Ellis

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Alternet Arizona Capitol Riot Congress Extremism Far-right January 6 Paul Gosar White Nationalism