White House fires staffer with ties to white nationalists

Staffer attended the Mencken conference delivered a stand-alone, academic talk titled ‘The Intelligentsia and the Right.’

By JTA
August 21, 2018 08:14
1 minute read.
US President Donald Trump delivers remarks about the protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017

US President Donald Trump delivers remarks about the protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017. (photo credit: JONATHAN ERNST / REUTERS)

 
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The White House has fired a policy aide and speechwriter with ties to white nationalists after reporters began asking questions about his employment.

According to CNN, Darren Beattie, a former professor and immigration hardliner, was fired after reporter Andrew Kaczynski asked about his attendance at the 2016 H.L. Mencken Club Conference at which he delivered a speech. White nationalist figures such as Richard Spencer, John Derbyshire and Robert Weissberg frequently attend the Mencken Club Conference.

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“In 2016 I attended the Mencken conference in question and delivered a stand-alone, academic talk titled ‘The Intelligentsia and the Right.’ I said nothing objectionable and stand by my remarks completely,” Beattie told CNN. “It was the honor of my life to serve in the Trump Administration. I love President Trump, who is a fearless American hero, and continue to support him 100 percent. I have no further comment.”

In a tweet, Kaczynski wrote that he had “asked the White House last week about a speechwriter who was listed as speaking at a conference that included white nationalists Peter Brimelow, Jared Taylor and a host of VDARE writers. Friday evening they told me he was gone.” VDARE is an anti-immigration website.




Trump has struggled to shake off accusations of racism. After last year’s clashes between white supremacists and counterdemonstrators that left one dead in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump issued a statement saying there were “very fine people” on both sides. His former chief strategist, Steve Bannon, is affiliated with the far right Breitbart News, which he has called a “platform for the alt-right.”


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