NBC News correspondent Morgan Radford interviewed a number of adherents to the child sex trafficking conspiracy theory QAnon, including a number of GOP congressional candidates who support the outlandish and quasi-religious ideology
During a Morning Joe segment that aired on Monday, Radford sat down with Matthew Lusk, a Republican running in Florida’s 5th congressional district who puts the letter “Q” on the back of his campaign sign, while the front of his posters are emblazoned with the Trump-like slogan “Putting America First.”
“Do you believe there’s a ring of high profile politicians who are kidnapping and sacrificing children?” Radford asked Lusk, to which he replied by suggesting that such malicious actors are running the government: “I think there are pedophile rings in the federal bureaucracy in D.C.”
The conspiracy, which popped up a year into President Donald Trump’s term and is pushed almost exclusively by his most die-hard supporters, alleges that a secret international cabal of pedophiles who engage in ritual child sacrifice are running the world; they also insist that Trump, who they believe is a righteous figure divinely put into power to save the world from evil, is one of the only people in government actively working to remove and expose this massive operation of child predators.
QAnon, a theory whose supporters are so radical that the FBI released an official memo warning officers about the ideology, is closely tied to the Pizzagate conspiracy that arose during the 2016 election and accused Hillary Clinton and other top Democrats of running a child sex ring in the basement of a Washington, D.C. pizzeria.
The second pro-QAnon candidate that NBC News interviewed was slightly less explicit in their support for the movement but stood by it nonetheless.
“I believe there is someone out there putting information on the Internet,” said California GOP congressional candidate Eriz Cruz, referencing an aspect of the conspiracy that claims an anonymous intelligence official with a “Q” level security clearance — thus the name “QAnon” — is leaking updates online about Trump’s moves to stop the supposed elite pedophiles.
Cruz, who is an ardently pro-Trump candidate, added that QAnon supporters should never be dismissed,
Radford also attended a Trump rally to speak with supporters of his presidency who push the conspiracy. One told the NBC News reporter that she thinks “Hillary Clinton has actually been arrested at one point” for her role in the pedophile ring, while another argued that while QAnon is real, the only “BS” involved in the theory comes from “the mainstream media.”
Watch above, via MSNBC.