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Republicans endorse Idaho school board candidate who thinks Pete Buttigieg ‘dabbles in human trafficking’

Lily Wakefield October 3, 2021
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Idaho school board candidate David J Reilly, who thinks Pete Buttigieg wants to 'dabble in human trafficking'

David J Reilly. (Facebook/ David J Reilly for School Board)

Republicans in Kootenai County, Idaho, have endorsed a school board candidate who thinks Pete Buttigieg and his husband want to “dabble in human trafficking”.

David Reilly is a Catholic, far-right former radio host who, despite insisting it was “absolutely out of the question” that he would send his own child to public school, is running for a school board position in the city of Post Falls, Idaho.

Now, despite a long history and misogynistic, homophobic, transphobic, racist and anti-Semitic comments, he has earned an endorsement form the Kootenai County GOP.

During the vetting process with Kootenai County, Reilly declared that “it is impossible to change the sex that God assigned a person at the moment of conception”, and that “homosexual acts are intrinsically immoral, and while the people who commit such acts may be tolerated, the acts and the lifestyle should not be promoted”.

In a now-deleted tweet, Reilly shared an article about then-presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg and his husband planning to have a baby.

He wrote: “Alternate headline: Pete Buttigieg and his ‘husband’ are planning to start dabbling in human trafficking.”

He has described diversity and inclusion programmes in schools as “flowing from the same Marxist theorists, towards the same goal of eroding Christian values and fomenting division among Americans”.

On students that may need to access abortion services, he said: “Abortion is a sin that cries to heaven for vengeance, and the public school system should have absolutely nothing to do with encouraging or procuring abortions.”

He added that students should “never” be supported with their mental health without parental notification.

In another deleted tweet from January, 2020, Reilly referred to women’s suffrage as a “mistake”.

The school board candidate has also promoted anti-Semitic and racist conspiracy theories.

In a 2019 article, he said that “the Catholic Church has been infiltrated by  homosexuals, Jews, and bad leadership”, and promoted the “Great Replacement” white nationalist conspiracy theory.

David Reilly is a school board candidate in Idaho, a state which is calling for the reversal of discrimination protections for LGBT+ people

Earlier this year, Idaho became one of 20 Republican states which banded together to sue Joe Biden’s administration, in a bid to reverse discrimination protections for LGBT+ students and workers.

In June 2020, the US Supreme Court court ruled in Bostock v Clayton County that existing provisions under the 1964 Civil Rights Act, known as Title VII, which outlaws discrimination based on sex, also apply to cases where “an employer fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender”.

The US Department of Education later announced that following the ruling, the same concept should be applied to queer school students. 

But the 20 Republican-led US states, including, are seeking to strike down these protections. Legal proceedings are ongoing.

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