The candidate, state Sen. Doug Mastriano, attended the conference called “Patriots Arise for God and Country,” according to Right Wing Watch, a website that monitors the far right.
Mastriano was joined by Republican lieutenant governor hopeful Teddy Daniels; Maryland gubernatorial candidate Dan Cox; Liz Harrington, a spokesperson for former President Donald Trump; and former Trump campaign attorney Jenna Ellis, according to Philadelphia Inquirer, which first reported the story.
QAnon conspiracy theories, according to Right Wing Watch. The conference included the screening of a video claiming that the country is experiencing a “great awakening” that will expose “ritual child sacrifice” and a “global satanic blood cult,” the Inquirer reported.
Once part of the GOP fringe, QAnon adherents have become an increasingly mainstream part of the Republican base. They claim among other things, that “a group of Satan-worshiping elites who run a child sex ring are trying to control our politics and media,” The New York Times reported last September. Adherents rallied around former President Donald Trump, whom they believed was going to save the country from that cabal of elites and Democrats.
Mastriano (R-Franklin), who has consistently led polls of the crowded Republican primary field, raised money at the event, the Inquirer reported. Organizers reportedly auctioned off a portrait of Trump for $4,000, with the proceeds benefiting Mastriano, the newspaper reported.
According to Right Wing Watch, co-organizer Francine Fosdick held a sit-down with QAnon conspiracy theorist Sheila Holm, where they discussed how “the government worships Lucifer and is controlled by 'The Order of Paladin,' 'The Wiccan Order of Knighthood,' and the New World Order,” Right Wing Watch reported.
GOP candidates Doug Mastriano, Teddy Daniels, and Doug Cox attended a QAnon event last weekend called "Patriots Arise." The first speaker was Scott McKay (aka "Patriot Streetfighter") who threatened to kill those responsible for "child satanic trafficking and abuse of children." pic.twitter.com/ylas2kTP7U— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) April 26, 2022
During his appearance on Saturday, Daniels “complained that he often gets accused of being ‘uncivil,’ but he defended himself by insisting that the right can only be civil with the left once ‘we beat the crap out of them’: “We will be civil on our terms, not theirs,’” according to Right Wing Watch.
Mastriano, who has been vocal about his own Christian beliefs, told the audience on Saturday that he’ll win this November’s general election because “my God will make it so” and vowed to boost energy production to make the state more competitive.
“It’s gonna be beautiful,” Mastriano said. “Pennsylvania will be the freest, most hopeful, most constitutionally based state in the nation. People are gonna want to move here — and Maryland as well — … You think Florida looks good, it’s going to be amateur hour."
Francine Fosdick, organizer of the QAnon "Patriots Arise" event attended by several GOP candidates last weekend, claimed that the government worships Lucifer while Sheila Holm warned about "The Order of Paladin," "The Wiccan Order of Knighthood," and the New World Order. pic.twitter.com/ZhsvBP1KHq— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) April 26, 2022
Mastriano, who was subpoenaed by the U.S. House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection, said he regards the summons as a “badge of honor,” the Inquirer reports. Mastriano was at the Capitol on Jan. 6, but has denied participating. Video, however, apparently shows him closer to the building than he claimed.
John Micek is the Editor in Chief of the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, where this story first appeared.