Arizona Black Republican Says His Daughter Received Text With N-Word

GOP extremists are apparently disenchanted with Rep. Walter Blackman, the first Black Republican elected to the Arizona legislature, who says right-wing extremists are targeting his family.

An Arizona Black Republican lawmaker says his daughter received a racist text message after his negative comments about the effort in his state to decertify the 2020 presidential election.

President Joe Biden won the state, but Trump loyalists continue to push his false contention that the vote count was rigged.

State Rep. Walter Blackman, the first Black Republican elected to the Arizona legislature, blames the far-right media for conducting a racist smear campaign against him, the Huffington Post reports.

“Your (N-word) dad is RINO,” the text read, an acronym meaning “Republican in Name Only,” a term used by Republicans to criticize members of their party deemed not conservative enough.

In January, the far-right website, the Gateway Pundit, published an article in which it called Blackman a RINO in the headline for saying in an interview that Arizona can’t decertify the 2020 election.

“There’s been a lot of chatter about decertifying the election. There’s a couple things wrong with that, that we can’t do that. We are not going to be able to decertify an election… number two, you look at the Constitution. There is nothing in the Constitution that says that we can decertify,” the site quoted Blackman, who is running for Congress.

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Blackman’s comment came as some Trump loyalists in the Arizona legislature try to do just that, even though an audit confirmed that Biden won the state.

The Washington Examiner reported that Arizona state Rep. Mark Finchem introduced a resolution Monday (Feb. 7) calling for the 2020 presidential election count in three counties (Maricopa, Pima and Yuma) to be “set aside” because of alleged evidence that the vote was “irredeemably compromised.”

According to the Post, Blackman’s wife took to Facebook and appeared to blame the Gateway Pundit for encouraging extremists to send the racist text. Gateway Pundit says the number the text purportedly originated from went to Blackman’s voicemail, suggesting that the lawmaker sent the text. However, Blackman disputed that claim.

“It is illogical and crazy to think I would send this vile text message to my daughter or know anything about it. I have been in contact with the state police who are investigating the origin of these messages. While their investigation is ongoing, they have determined that the text messages did not in any way, shape or form originate with my cell phone,” Blackman said in a statement to the Post.

“This is what happens when your opponents can’t run a campaign on the issues, they resort to disgusting smear attacks with a word that has no place in our Republican Party or society in general,” Blackman added.

If Blackman’s name is familiar, it might stem from controversy over his giving a warm welcome to the Proud Boys, a far-right extremist group, who attended one of his congressional campaign rallies.

According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the Proud Boys have appeared alongside other hate groups at extremist events, including the infamous 2017 United the Right march in Charlottesville, Va. Proud Boys leaders have been charged in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

"I believe those are the Proud Boys back there. Let me tell you something about the Proud Boys. The Proud Boys came to one of my events and that was one of the proudest moments of my life. Not because of what the media portrayed them to be, but the patriots they showed young people: the example on how to be an American," Blackman said, according to CNN.

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