House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said that the Republican party is not the party of “nativist dog whistles,” in an apparent rebuke of the leaked platform of a new caucus reportedly being formed by several Republicans.
“America is built on the idea that we are all created equal and success is earned through honest, hard work. It isn’t built on identity, race, or religion,” McCarthy wrote on Twitter. “The Republican Party is the party of Lincoln & the party of more opportunity for all Americans—not nativist dog whistles.”
Plans of the “America First” caucus were first reported by Punchbowl News Friday. The group is being led by Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga., and Paul Gosar, R-Ariz.
The seven-page policy outline obtained by Punchbowl said that members of the caucus needed to possess a “certain intellectual boldness” to follow in President Trump’s footsteps and “potentially step on some toes and sacrifice sacred cows for the good of the American nation.”
A copy of the platform was obtained by The Hill.
Among the group’s positions is that election fraud is widespread and the electoral system needs serious reform, including an end to mail-in voting.
On immigration, the group argues that “America is a nation, with a border, and a culture, strengthened by uniquely Anglo-Saxon political traditions.”
“History has shown that societal trust and political unity are threatened when foreign citizens are imported en-masse into a country, particularly without institutional support for assimilation,” the document reads.
On infrastructure, the group promotes buildings with “architectural, engineering and aesthetic value that befits the progeny of European architecture.” On coronavirus, the group argues for ending lockdowns and social distancing requirements.
Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, told reporters he was “looking at” joining the America First caucus.
When asked about references to “Anglo-Saxon” influence, he said he “hadn’t seen that.”
“It’s not supposed to be about race at all,” Gohmert said.
Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., tweeted Friday that he will be joining the caucus.
“I’m proud to join @mtgreenee in the #AmericaFirst Caucus. We will end wars, stop illegal immigration & promote trade that is fair to American workers,” Gaetz tweeted. “This is just a hit piece from the America Last crowd in Big Media, Big Tech & Big Government.”
A spokesperson for Greene confirmed to Punchbowl only that a platform is being written.
“Capitol Hill is full of dirty backstabbing swamp creatures willing to leak gossip to borderline tabloids, like Punchbowl News,” said spokesman Nick Dyer. “Be on the lookout for a public release for the America First Caucus platform when it’s released publicly very soon.”