This is not the most important story you’ll read today, but it may be the most satisfying. In the aftermath of the Parkland shootings, we watched a group of survivors reach national prominence as they refused to stay silent and publicly rejected the usual patterns of grief and dismissal. Figures like Emma Gonzalez became household names, but no activist riled conservatives as much as David Hogg—their hatred of him, and the way they harassed him, was frankly pathological. And now, one Republican mayor in Maine might lose his job over it.
Nick Isgro is the mayor of Waterville, ME, and like a lot of his ilk, he had a major Hogg problem. That problem became a crisis recently after a tweet targeting the high schooler led to criticism from all corners, including other local Republicans. It started when Fox News’ Laura Ingraham mocked Hogg for getting rejected by four colleges:
Hogg responded by encouraging his followers to go after her advertisers, and they did, which resulted in at least 20 companies dropping their ads from Ingraham's show. (She was forced to apologize, hilariously.)
Fox news eventually backed Ingraham, saying “we cannot and will not allow voices to be censored by agenda-driven intimidation efforts,” and that's when Isgro stepped in. Here's what he tweeted, and then deleted:
“Eat it, Hogg.”
As you can see from that tweet, this didn’t sit well with other Waterville Republicans, and Democrats liked it even less. That, plus a history of attacking Muslims and immigrants and pushing alt-right conspiracies on social media, led to a recall effort in Waterville that gained enough signatures to force a vote. Pending a few legislative steps, the vote will take place on June 12.
Isgro “resigned” from his job at a local bank shortly after his tweet (leading Maine’s wacko Republican governor Paul LePage to dash off an angry letter to the bank), and as he fights for his political life, he’s taking a page from the populist playbook by blaming everything on outside agitators:
Make no mistake, this coordinated effort organized by dark money funded outsiders who do not live in Our City is not simply an attack on me, it is an attack on all of us.
And dig this apocalyptic prose:
n the coming weeks, a dark cloud of deceit will descend on Waterville. Thousands more will be spent, paid political operatives will roam the streets, political parties will lay claim to your vote, and the efforts to deceive and intimidate will continue. The once proud local press—that at one time worked in the public interest—will continue to ignore all of this and only report what serves the dark cloud.
Isgro should have learned his lesson: You mess with the David, you get the Hogg.