Donald Trump Jr. said Tuesday that Mike Cernovich, who runs the alt-right website DangerandPlay.com, deserves a Pulitzer Prize for a blog post he wrote accusing former national security adviser Susan Rice of unethical practices.
But Cernovich has a history of racist and sexist tweets, such as advice on how to “slut shame” Black women.
According to a CNN article published in November, Cernovich “regularly tweets inflammatory and unfounded conspiracy theories.”
He wrote on Aug. 12, 2012 in since-deleted tweet:
“Have you guys ever tried ‘raping’ a girl without using force? Try it. It’s basically impossible. Date rape does not exist.”
In February 2016, Cernovich tweeted: “Not being a slut is the only proven way to avoid AIDS. If you love Black women, slut shame them.”
In July he tweeted:
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) July 8, 2016
And, Cernovich’s stories on his website have been called “fake” by news outlets such as “60 Minutes.”
Trump tweeted on Tuesday:
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) April 4, 2017
In a blog post published Sunday, Cernovich, who refers to himself as a “lawyer, author, free speech activist, and documentary filmmaker,” accuses Rice of seeking to unmask the names of Americans affiliated with President Donald Trump’s team whose communications were picked up through incidental collection by government intelligence agencies. He is in essence accusing Rice of leaking classified information and political spying, which echoes the president’s claim, relayed in a tweet, that he was “wire tapped” by former President Barack Obama.
Cernovich is known for using his website and the hashtag #Pizzagate on Twitter to promote the conspiracy theory that a Washington, D.C., pizza parlor was a nest of pedophiles connected to Hillary Clinton. This led to a man with an assault rifle storming the restaurant to “investigate.”
Although the eldest son of President Trump believes Cernovich deserves a Pulitzer Prize that is awarded for excellence in newspaper journalism, Scott Pelley of “60 Minutes,” a broadcast which has won 138 Emmy Awards and 20 Peabody Awards, called Cernovich’s past news stories “fake” and “lies.”
In a segment on fake news that aired March 26, Pelley introduced Cernovich as the founder of a website, Danger & Play, which “has become a magnet for readers with a taste for stories with no basis in fact.”
On Tuesday, Cernovich tweeted the following, which acknowledged Trump’s praise:
I will only accept the Pulitzer if 60 Minutes apologizes for calling me fake news! #SusanRice
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) April 5, 2017
“So now, a report that originated in the sewers of the alt-right with a Pizzagate conspirator who believes in ‘white genocide’ is being widely propagated on the right, and investigated by mainstream media outlets, who are mostly debunking it, to their credit,” Joan Wash wrote in a column for The Nation published Tuesday.
“The problem is the right’s affection for fake news, but also for racism and sexism. The mere person of Susan Rice has always engaged the right; she’s long been depicted as incompetent, as a liar and now, a purveyor of disease.”
Republican Sen. Tom Cotton has referred to Rice as “the Typhoid Mary of the Obama Administration.”
“’Typhoid Mary’ wasn’t Black, but an Irish immigrant, the next on the totem pole back then (though Mary Fallon did indeed spread the disease; the charge against Rice is false and offensive.),” Walsh wrote.
In an interview with NBC’s Andrea Mitchell on Tuesday, Rice said the allegations made against her are false.
“The allegation is that somehow the Obama administration officials utilized intelligence for political purposes, ” she said. “That’s absolutely false.”
Rice added that it’s not unusual to request the identities of people caught on intelligence surveillance.
“There were occasions when I would receive a report in which a U.S. person was referred to, name not provided, just a U.S. person, and sometimes in that context in order to understand the importance of that report, and assess its significance, it was necessary to find out or request the information as to who that U.S. official was,” she said.
“You use a terrorist attack on our city to attack London’s Mayor for your own political gain. You’re a disgrace,” Wes Streeting, a member of British parliament, replied to Trump.
“This doesn’t seem to be quite the scandal so many on the right wished it to be,” Kathleen Parker wrote in an opinion piece for The Washington Post (which has won more than 40 Pulitzer Prizes) published Tuesday.
“Some reports said Rice did request a review and receive names, but she adamantly denied leaking any names, saying that this would have constituted releasing classified information.
“One name the White House says was unmasked in intelligence reports was Michael Flynn, who resigned after it was revealed that he mischaracterized to Vice President Pence conversations he had with the Russian ambassador. Only later did we learn of Flynn’s $500,000 public relations job for Turkey.
“You see how the focus keeps getting directed away from Russia to the Obama administration or any other handy object. Trump continues to blame poor sportsmanship for all his travails, including any fact-based reporting that contradicts his primary intelligence sources, Fox News and Breitbart News (and, perhaps, his Magic 8-Ball).”
Parker mentions Retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who resigned in February as the president’s national security adviser after information surfaced that he spoke with Russian ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak, about sanctions against Russia shortly before Trump took office.
In regard to social media, Flynn had a history of interacting and promoting on Twitter members of the alt-right movement, including Cernovich.
He tweeted in October:
— General Flynn (@GenFlynn) October 9, 2016