“That’s not appropriate here!” chided an audibly nervous Minnesota congressman Tom Emmer, 60, at a recent National Republican Congressional Committee donor retreat in Key Biscayne, Florida. Emmer’s composure faltered when he was asked from the floor why a selection of 10 congressional seats targeted in the 2022 midterm elections did not include any of those held by the 10 Republican representatives who voted to impeach President Trump in 2021, seven of whom are still delusional enough to seek reelection this year.
The question came from Laura Loomer, 28, who is currently running for the Republican nomination in Florida’s solidly red 11th congressional district. The seat is held currently by Dan Webster, who curiously failed to cast a vote on the 2021 impeachment. In 2020, Loomer won the Republican nomination in Florida’s decidedly bluer 21st congressional district, where she also gained President Donald Trump’s endorsement and his vote (the 21st includes Palm Beach, where he resides). She raised more funds than all seven of her Republican primary opponents and Democratic incumbent Lois Frankel combined.
You might not have heard about Loomer’s race, but it was historic. She was the first congressional candidate in history to be banned from virtually all social media, leading many commentators to dismiss her candidacy as impossible. To its disgrace, the GOP establishment provided Loomer with no funds and almost totally ignored her, while some elements of the party, including the notorious Lincoln Project, attacked her more than they attacked Democrats. Her opponent refused to debate her or even mention her name in public.
You can, however, learn all about Loomer’s campaign and her dynamic and adversarial approach to politics in her new book, Loomered: How I Became the Most Banned Woman in the World. For any true conservative, it is a must-read. Perhaps for that reason, establishment Republicans and the embarrassed bow-tied bystanders of Conservatism, Inc. have ignored it as assiduously as they ignored Loomer’s nomination, even though her energy, intrepidity, and grassroots skills put a blue district in play, and could have been a Republican win.
Loomer’s story is one of the most compelling tales of modern American politics, but she wrote Loomered as a warning as well as a memoir. As a verb, to “Loomer” has two meanings. The first is to use our constitutional rights of free speech, assembly, and association to confront people in power with questions that they would prefer not to be asked, still less answer. It is the closest thing contemporary America has to speaking truth to power.
Loomer has excelled in this, embarrassing the likes of Hillary Clinton, James Comey, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, the founders of the 2017 Women’s March, Big Tech titans, and other leftist ne’er-do-wells—and now the ridiculous Tom Emmer—with well-documented facts that the mainstream media never touches.
The second meaning refers to Loomer’s own fate. For putting public figures on the spot and stating opinions of which they disapprove, she has been banned from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Uber, Lyft, Uber Eats, PayPal, Venmo, GoFundMe, Medium, Stripe, YouTube, and Clubhouse, among other platforms and payment services that have no problem hosting the Taliban, the Iranian regime, jihadist organizations, Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and other organizations that routinely incite and sometimes perpetrate violence against America and its citizens.
With zero factual basis, Loomer has been widely denounced as a racist, a white supremacist, a “dangerous individual,” and, despite the fact that she is Jewish, a Nazi. She has been denied her Second Amendment right to own a firearm. She was detained, questioned, and searched after returning from a trip abroad just after January 6, 2021, even though she did not attend that day’s demonstration at the U.S. Capitol.
A brilliant observer of politics, Loomer quickly understood that the cancel-culture tactics weaponized to persecute her, even with the stature of a congressional candidate, would just as easily be adopted against other conservatives who stepped out of line. As early as September 2018, when the power of Big Tech fell under the scrutiny of the Trump Administration and a Republican Congress, she publicly called out Twitter’s then-CEO Jack Dorsey when he peddled the House Energy and Commerce Committee preposterous assurances that Twitter did not censor political speech.
At the time, Loomer, along with a few others, had been banned from Twitter for political speech. And there she was in the audience, from which she loudly announced that fact directly at Dorsey, and warned that other conservatives, including President Trump, would also be banned for political reasons. The swamp Republicans running the committee swiftly had her removed, with the grotesque Billy Long of Missouri even starting a mock auctioneering routine to drown out her voice of protest.
We all know what has happened since. Dissenting voices, including that of a sitting president of the United States, were and remained banned by unregulated and monopolistic Big Tech, while dictators and terrorists post freely. Even outside of electoral politics, Big Tech censorship has for ideological reasons stymied open public discussion of issues of pressing national importance, including, until recently and possibly when it was too late, the nature and origins of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Allowing this massive concentration of coercive power over the information sector, Loomer persuasively writes, stands as the Trump Administration’s greatest failure. It is likely one that cost the former president reelection, as we now know that Big Tech actively suppressed stories unfavorable to his opponent. The complacent and uninspired establishment GOP may still do nothing about it even if, as widely predicted, it takes back a congressional majority this year. But if that majority includes Laura Loomer, it is hard to imagine how it can avoid it.