Former GOP aide goes on racist rants about ‘violent Black underclass’

Former GOP aide goes on racist rants about ‘violent Black underclass’

A Republican operative who has clerked for Justice Neil Gorsuch and helped the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee usher through the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court has used his Twitter account to post racist screeds targeting Black people over the past few months.

Mike Davis, formerly chief counsel for nominations under Senator Chuck Grassley, has posted several tweets since August of 2023 fuming about what he referred to as a “violent Black underclass” in America. That “underclass”, he insists in the tweets, is being protected and grown by the Democratic Party. The tweets frequently accompany or quote-tweet videos depicting images of mass retail theft, fights between students in high schools, or other media generally depicting Black youth as violent.

He went further in one instance, using dehumanising language to describe a group of Black teenagers seen fighting in a video another Twitter user had posted: “These monsters will kill.”

The tweets using racist language have remained on Mr Davis’s account, with one tweet using the above description of “violence” within a “Black underclass” having been posted on 10 September.

That tweet remains up, as does a response he posted to a Twitter user who objected to the phrase, where Mr Davis questioned whether he should describe it as “ghetto culture” and accuses his critics of being performatively offended.

Mr Davis, contacted by The Independent on Monday, stood by his language, explaining on a phone call that what he saw as a “violent Black underclass” was a threat to American society and in particular Black Americans, who he described as living in “third-world Marxist hellholes”. He now serves as president of the Article III Project, a GOP-leaning group that supports conservative judges.

"The liberals who pretend it's racist to express outrage at this tragic racial violence, disproportionately harming Black Americans, are the racists for ignoring it,” Mr Davis continued in a text message.

He also responded in another tweet: “This tweet is triggering liberals. Good. They’d rather scream ‘Racism!’ when someone points out the problem. Instead of addressing the problem. Guess who gets disproportionally harmed in the meantime? Law-abiding Black Americans stuck living with these violent monsters.”

The normalisation of racist language and political policies based on race or ethnicity has become a major feature of the Republican Party in the past half-decade at least. Formerly exiled to the fringes of American political society, politicians and political operatives who use such language freely have become increasingly tolerated among Republicans in the Beltway.

The most obvious example of this has been the flirtation between avowed white nationalist and Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes and various members of the GOP House caucus on Capitol Hill, including Reps Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar.

Others include the embrace of “great replacement theory”-styled rhetoric by conservatives such as Tucker Carlson, formerly of Fox News, and even Republicans in the House and Senate like House GOP conference chair Elise Stefanik.

A request for comment from Mr Grassley’s office was not immediately returned.