Alex Jones, the controversial internet media personality, got into a spat with Senator Marco Rubio outside of a Senate Intelligence Committee meeting, NBC News reports. According to NBC, the meeting was attended by executives from Twitter and Facebook as it focused on foreign interference on U.S.-owned social media platforms. The gathering seems to have been of particular interest to Jones since his content was banned from said platforms.
Based on video footage from their interaction, Jones butted into a press conference with Rubio after the meeting and asked him about an alleged purge of conservative voices from online media. Rubio seems like he’s trying to ignore the notorious shock-jock but Jones keeps pressing him with more questions. When the senator tries to answer a question from a reporter, Jones interrupts and speaks over him.
“Is that a heckler at a press gaggle?” Rubio says in reference to the host of The Alex Jones Show
At one point Rubio calls Jones a “dumba**.” But nevertheless, Jones persists and manages to get the senator’s full attention.
Their conversation takes a turn when Jones puts a hand on Rubio’s shoulder.
“Hey, don’t touch me again, man. I’m asking you not to touch me again,” Rubio said, his eyes shooting daggers at Jones.
“You’re not gonna get arrested man,” he continued, before making what sounds like a veiled threat. “I’ll take care of it myself.”
“Oh, he’s so mad. You’re not going to silence me. You’re not going to silence America.” Jones said after accusing Rubio of threatening to “beat him up.”
— CNBC (@CNBC) September 5, 2018
As we mentioned earlier, Alex Jones’ website/online show has been banned from social media websites like YouTube, Facebook, Spotify, and Apple. As Vox reports, Jones has become known for spreading dangerous conspiracy theories that often target racial and religious minorities. One of those conspiracy theories had devastating consequences when a man shot a rifle into a Washington, D.C. pizzeria that conspiracy theorists, including Jones, claimed was the base for a child prostitution ring.
Jones apologized for spreading the baseless rumor on InfoWars after the shooting.
Alex Jones has also become one of the most prominent faces of the “truther” movement, who are people that believe events like September 11 and school shooting are staged incidents or “false flags.” The New York Times reports that the relatives of the students who died in the Sandy Hook shooting have sued Jones and InfoWars for defamation after he claimed that the tragedy was a hoax.
Donald Trump appeared on The Alex Jones Show before he was president. As Haaretz reports, he was a guest in 2015 and gave Jones some glowing praise.
“Your reputation is amazing. I will not let you down,” Trump said.
— GQ Magazine (@GQMagazine) September 5, 2018