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Lincoln Project claims it staged fake Nazi stunt against Va. GOP gubernatorial candidate Youngkin

Media and Democratic officials initially believed the incident was real.

Published: October 30, 2021 10:49am

Updated: October 30, 2021 1:47pm

The famously anti-Trump Lincoln Project claims to have staged a fake neo-Nazi stunt in Charlottesville, Virginia, meant to smear state GOP gubernatorial candidate Glenn Youngkin days ahead of a neck-and-neck election.

Youngkin had made a campaign stop in Charlottesville on Friday morning, at which point numerous individuals in red caps and carrying Tiki torches appeared to turn out in his favor. 

The Tiki torches were an evident callback to the “Unite the Right” neo-Nazi rally that occurred in Charlottesville several years ago, one that resulted in the death of a counter-protester and which became a cultural flashpoint over the course of Republican Donald Trump's presidency. 

Multiple Virginia Democratic officials Friday made efforts to connect Youngkin’s apparent neo-Nazi supporters to his overall campaign. Yet some Internet sleuths began to note that the putative Nazis appeared to resemble Virginia Democratic associates. 

The Lincoln Project on Friday afternoon subsequently appeared to confess to staging the event.

"Today's demonstration was our way of reminding Virginians what happened in Charlottesville four years ago, the Republican Party's embrace of those values, and Glenn Youngkin’s failure to condemn it," the group said in a statement on its website.

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