It’s emerged as a frequent political talking point on the right in the Trump years that social media networks are biased against conservatives and too quick to suspend or ban controversial social users if they’re on the political right.
Fox News host Laura Ingraham did a segment about just that on Thursday night, but one of the conservatives that she included raised some eyebrows.
Per HuffPost, Ingraham ran a graphic of “prominent voices censored on social media,” which included the likes of Alex Jones, Milo Yiannopoulos, Laura Loomer, and James Woods.
Ingraham described these people as “people who believe in border enforcement, people who believe in national sovereignty,” and had as her guest the conservative commentator Candace Owens. Owens was also included in the graphic, even though she has not been kicked off Twitter. Owens was once locked out of her Twitter account for 12 hours in the summer of 2018, per Fox News; Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, earlier that year, had personally apologized to Owens for describing her as “far right.”
But also included on Ingraham’s graphic was Paul Nehlen, a journeyman political candidate from Wisconsin who has mounted unsuccessful primary challenges to former House Speaker Paul Ryan for his seat in Congress. Per Newsweek, Nehlen has even turned against President Trump, describing him as a “cuck” and failure, despite being a full-throated supporter at the time of Trump’s 2016 presidential run.
Nehlen has reportedly, over the years, become an open white nationalist and anti-Semite, praising the marchers at the deadly “Unite the Right” march in Charlottesville in 2017. He was kicked off Twitter in early 2018, per The Inquisitr, after tweeting a racist photoshopped photo of Meghan Markle. Nehlen’s account had previously been suspended after he posted a picture of several journalists with Jewish stars superimposed over their faces.
Like many kicked off Twitter for racist tweets, Nehlen soon began posting on Gab, the social network that pushes itself as the “free speech” alternative to Twitter. Nehlen, two months later, was kicked off Gab for revealing the identity of another poster, the alt-right Twitter user who formerly posted under the name “Ricky Vaughn,” per The Forward. Nehlen has also appeared on the radio show of former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.
While Nehlen once had aspirations to unseat Paul Ryan from Congress, the Republican Party in Wisconsin has cut ties with him.
An advertiser boycott was launched against Ingraham last year after she mocked David Hogg, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas school shooting survivor-turned-activist.