As President-elect Donald Trump continues to create his Kakistocracy (a government run by the worst, least qualified, and most unscrupulous people) by surrounding himself with white supremacists and science denying loons, we can’t be too quick to let his old guard off the hook.
The queen of that old guard is Kellyanne Conway. And she has her own set of nasty Dalmatian-puppy skinned baggage.
Mother Jones is reporting that Trump’s omnipresent mouthpiece has ties to a fairly recent past of anti-Muslim conspiracy theory and anti-immigration xenophobia. Trump’s oft-cited junk survey regarding Muslim extremists entering the United States, was a product of Conway’s own misinformation firm, The Polling Company.
The article states that:
“Conway’s firm, The Polling Company, conducted this poll for the Center for Security Policy, a ‘think tank’ run by Frank Gaffney, a former Reagan administration defense official. Gaffney is a right-wing extremist who frequently pushes wild conspiracy theories and has often been at odds with other conservative leaders. He’s claimed there is ‘mounting evidence’ that President Barack Obama is a secret Muslim; alleged that Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood (Gaffney’s think tank claimed Abedin is one of six Muslim Brotherhood operatives working inside the Obama administration); and suggested the federal government, the media, and the financial sector have all been infiltrated by ‘Shariah-adherent’ Muslims.”
At the risk of committing a guilt by association fallacy, Mother Jones also pointed out that as a guest on Gaffney’s podcast, Conway said of Muslims in the U.S. choosing to follow Shariah of actual law:
“It’s very alarming to me that such a high number of individuals, Muslims living in the US, would say, ‘Well, we can have a choice.’ And I think this is important because the answer from lots of folks always is, ‘Look, don’t cast a wide net and call all Muslims nonpeaceful and violent and adhering to jihad and Shariah and bloodthirsty.’ Fine. However, look at the data. The Muslims living in the US themselves—27 percent of them, anyway—say that this is what the purpose of jihad is, to either punish nonbelievers (16 percent) or, the other 11 percent, to undermine non-Muslim states.”
As one who values data and evidence, her blatant disregard for good research methods is an affront to data science. What’s worse is she uses it as an excuse for her own personal anti-Muslim xenophobia. As if to say, “see, it’s not me…it’s the data.”
Here’s a video of Kellyanne Conway doing what she does best, tap dancing around facts and committing logical fallacies:
Featured image via YouTube screengrab.