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With millions in funding and the support of prominent Republicans, the conspiracy theory movement is one of the fastest-growing forces in American politics, a Grid investigation finds.
By Steve Reilly, Matt Stiles, Anya van Wagtendonk, Alex Leeds Matthews and Justin Rood | 12 April 2022
Part one of “The United States of QAnon,” an occasional series examining the QAnon movement’s influence in American politics.
GRID — Dozens of politicians running for state or federal office are aligning themselves with the right-wing, conspiracy-rich, sometimes-violent movement known as QAnon. They’re drawing tens of millions of dollars in donations as the movement’s popularity stays strong among voters, a Grid investigation has found.
And despite the movement’s penchant for lies and violence, key Republicans — from influential megadonors to prominent elected officials — are welcoming the QAnon movement into the party, Grid found. In sum: QAnon appears to be a growing political movement with increasing clout and significant mainstream appeal.
Grid reviewed public records and reporting, social media posts, and campaign materials and events to identify and confirm at least 78 QAnon-aligned candidates running for office in 26 states in 2022. They’re running for governorships, secretaries of state, seats in the Senate and House, and in state legislatures. They have raised over $20 million this cycle — and over $30 million since 2018.
All but six of the QAnon-aligned candidates Grid examined are Republican. Over a dozen are incumbents: Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) and Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) serve in the House of Representatives, while another 14 serve at the state level, mostly legislatures. Most are running against fellow Republicans in primaries, which will take place throughout the spring and summer.
Arizona has the highest number of QAnon-aligned candidates running in 2022, at 13. Other states with high numbers of QAnon candidates include Florida (12), California (10) and Texas (six). […]