“It’s not like a QAnon supporter went down a path where they got into George Bush and then started to read Ronald Reagan’s speeches, and then bought Milton Friedman’s ‘Capitalism and Freedom,’ and then believed in satanic baby eaters,” said Joseph Uscinski, a professor at the University of Miami who studies fringe groups. “It doesn’t work like that.”
Mr. Trump “won by saying that he wanted to drain the swamp,” Dr. Uscinski said. “By doing that, he essentially built a coalition of people with anti-establishment views.” Those who believe in QAnon, the professor added, “are probably the most extreme part of that coalition.”
In Western Colorado late last month, Lauren Boebert, a gun-rights activist who has made approving comments about QAnon, beat a five-term Republican incumbent and will now defend the sprawling district in November. In recent weeks she told the QAnon-aligned web show “Steel Truth” that “everything I’ve heard of Q — I hope this is real.”
In a recent interview, Ms. Boebert said she was not a follower of the group. But, she added, “I don’t believe that’s a radical notion to want to get rid of people trying to undermine the president of the United States.”
In Southern California, Mike Cargile, who is challenging an incumbent Democrat for a House seat, includes #WWG1WGA in his Twitter bio, a shortened version of the QAnon motto “Where We Go One We Go All.” He has repeated many of the group’s racist theories about Mr. Obama and Black Americans.
In an emailed response to questions, Mr. Cargile said that he sought only to discover the truth and that Americans needed to resist “Marxists’ efforts to deceive and divide.”
He said “we’ll see” what becomes of the QAnon theories. But, he added, all Americans should be alarmed by the efforts of the president’s opponents in Washington, “and even more so when we discover that the saboteurs and propagators are the very men and women tasked with safeguarding our system of Justice.”