PHILADELPHIA (WGHP) — North Carolina Lt. Gov. and governor hopeful Mark Robinson sang the praises of women in the City of Brotherly Love, pushing back against Moms For Liberty’s recent designation as a hate group and the backlash to the group’s use of an Adolf Hitler quote.
Robinson, the GOP frontrunner in the looming North Carolina gubernatorial race, appeared at the Moms for Liberty “Joyful Warriors” Summit over the weekend, speaking at “Blessings of Liberty Breakfast.”
In a transcript of the speech obtained by WGHP, Robinson lightly bemoans that he was under the impression he’d have two hours to speak but was ultimately given only 30 minutes. He used that 30-minute speaking time to mostly speak about women, both personal and historical, that stood up to what he characterizes as governmental forces.
He spoke about Boudicca, a legendary British figure who rebelled against the Roman Empire, and the Kongolese religious prophet Dona Beatriz Kimpa Vita.
“The nations of Congo were fully engaged in selling captives as commodities on the open market to be sold into the new world,” he said. “But inside this one nation, there was just one lady, one woman named Dona Beatriz Kimpa Vita, who stood up and declared that the slave trade was immoral, that slavery was illegal, it was against the word of God, and again, she raised an army, started a new religion and marched across the kingdoms of Africa.”
Kimpa Vita was most famous for predicting that Portugal would conquer her nation and enslave their people, which they did after she was burned at the stake. She also started her own branch of Christianity that stated that major Biblical figures were from the Congo.
He also spoke of Martha Washington during the American Revolution and Rosa Parks, and near the end of the speech he shared a now-familiar story of his own mother’s struggles after the death of his abusive father and how she worked to provide for him and his siblings.
“You see, the left has a problem of thinking that women’s history started with Hillary Clinton and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I have news for you. History is women’s history,” he said.
“One, nothing gets done until the women get involved. Second, if you know what’s best for you, don’t piss off the women.”
These comments contrast starkly with the accusations of misogynistic rhetoric Robinson faced last year when he wrote in his memoir that “we are called to be led by men,” calling into question women’s place as leaders.
He also decried a recent decision by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a non-profit dedicated to cataloging and researching extremist groups, to designate Moms for Liberty as an extremist group. Robinson repeatedly stated that the SPLC had labeled the group as “domestic terrorists,” which is not accurate as the SPLC labeled the group an “extremist organization” tied to an antigovernment ideology, not a domestic terrorist group.
Allegations of parents’ groups as domestic terrorists seem to stem from a 2021 letter to the president penned by the National School Board Association in which the group raised concerns about parents becoming violent and disruptive at school board meetings.
The NSBA said in its letter, for which it later apologized, “As these acts of malice, violence and threats against public school officials have increased, the classification of these heinous actions could be the equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes.”
Robinson appears to reference Attorney General Merrick Garland’s response to that letter, stating, “The attorney general of this nation had the unmitigated gall to call you domestic terrorist.”
While Garland’s memorandum advocates for investigations into the claims of these threats, the attorney general does not mention domestic terrorism. Garland said in Congressional testimony in October 2021, “I can’t imagine any circumstance in which the Patriot Act would be used in the circumstances of parents complaining about their children, nor can I imagine a circumstance where they would be labeled as domestic terrorism.”
Robinson continued, “You guys are doing the worst job ever of terrorism, I tell you. Antifa ain’t got nothing on you guys. Gosh, the Klan. Oh, wow. They got nothing on you guys. You guys are doing a bang-up job of being terrorists. What kind of lunacy are we living in today?”
Moms for Liberty has been accused of harassing detractors, antisemitic conspiracies and close relationships with other extremist groups like the Proud Boys.
‘They hate human beings’
He rails against the “climate change cabal,” saying that America has more oil under it than anywhere else on the planet but we don’t drill for it in order to satisfy a leftist plan to “drag the nation down.”
“A climate change cabal that cares more about the earth itself than the humans who live here. If there’s anything that can be said about the climate change cabal is that they hate human beings, they want them to freeze to death in the winter and burn to death in the summer,” he said.
A “cabal” is generally used to describe a secret political organization. In American politics, discussion of a cabal is often associated with QAnon, whose core beliefs are founded around unfounded claims that former President Donald Trump or some other political figure is fighting a “cabal” or “Deep State” of Satanic Democrat cannibals or the New World Order, a conspiracy that believes the world is controlled by a shadowy One World Government that orchestrates disasters in order to increase control over the population.
‘Every history book in America’
He addressed the backlash a Moms for Liberty chapter faced for quoting Hitler in a pamphlet. They apologized for the quote, but Robinson took shots at the backlash, characterizing the use of a quote in a newsletter as the same as a history book.
Robinson said, in a video that has been widely circulating:
“Because you quoted Hitler, you support Hitler. I guess every history book in America supports Hitler now. They all quote him. When you’re talking about Adolf Hitler, whether you’re talking about Chairman Mao, whether you’re talking about Stalin, whether you’re talking about Pol Pot, whether you’re talking about Castro in Cuba or whether you’re talking about a dozen other despots all around the globe, it is time for us to get back and start reading some of those quotes. It’s time for us to start teaching our children some of those quotes. It’s time for us to start teaching our children about the dirty, despicable, awful things that those communist and socialist despots did in our history.”
The remark prompted a response from North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein, who is running for governor as a Democrat, among others.
“Mark Robinson defended Moms for Liberty’s use of Hitler’s words in promotional materials and is now telling teachers to feed students quotes from dictators like Stalin, Mao and Castro,” said Stein in response to the short clip. “This is the same guy who wants to ban books and eliminate science and history lessons. It’s unbelievable and un-American.”
Robinson fired back on social media, with his camp saying that the quote had been taken out of context and that the final part referencing “the dirty, despicable, awful things that those communist and socialist despots did in our history” had been removed. Robinson shared a video including a larger portion of his speech to give more context.
He said that this education is necessary because he believes college professors are telling their students that countries with communist or socialist governments and programs such as universal healthcare are “wonderful.” He specifically references Scandinavian countries like Denmark.
“If one more person tries to compare Denmark to America. I think I’m going to lose my lunch. Denmark is not America. And Denmark will never be America,” he said.
Robinson also espoused the belief that protestors who had gathered to demonstrate against the Moms for Liberty Summit that weekend were being paid to protest. He did not say who he believed was paying the protestors.
“As a people who believe in America, it’s not our job to go fishing for people who have already rejected us, who despise us, who have paid these protesters to be out here. That’s not our job,” he said, advocating for people to go out and help change the minds of voters in urban areas.
‘There was real racism’
Robinson briefly speaks about the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, categorizing segregated America as Black people expressing “self-determination” and decrying then-President Lyndon B. Johnson.
“In this nation, there was real racism. Yes, there was. And we all know it,” Robinson said. “But at a time when racism was at its highest, Black people were so poor, they were succeeding at their very best. 85% of them were mother, father, household with children. They owned their own businesses. They owned their own banks. They owned their own schools. They owned their own neighborhoods. Self-determination was the rule of the day, just as those founders were self-determining when they signed that Declaration of Independence, before they were even free,” he said.
“Lyndon Johnson came up with this program and said, ‘You know, we need to give them something. Not enough to be powerful, just enough few crumbs off the table. If we play it right, we’ll have these people voting for us for the next 200 years.'”
This seems to be a reference to Lyndon Johnson’s “War on Poverty” and his attempts to direct social programs to address poverty at a time when roughly 20% of Americans were poor. Lyndon Johnson was also responsible for signing the Civil Rights Act of 1964 after the death of President John F. Kennedy, which outlawed segregation in public spaces.
Robinson has come under fire in recent months for resurfaced comments that seem to similarly decry integration and the Civil Rights Movement as harmful to the Black community. In May, he released a campaign ad featuring one of the men who kicked off the sit-in movement in the 60s at Woolworths in Greensboro.
In his speech, he also discussed his belief that lawmakers in North Carolina hate him and want him to “die in his sleep” and then decried Gov. Roy Cooper’s decision to declare a state of emergency around public education, pointing out that Cooper sent his own daughter to a private school but opposes school choice legislation that would grant taxpayer money to charter and private schools.
He concludes by bringing his speech full circle, speaking about his mother in the way he did the historical women at the beginning of his time and directly comparing them to Moms for Liberty’s movement.
Where’s Robinson heading next?
While Robinson does not have any specific campaign events listed on his website, it was announced last month that he would be attending Clay Clark and General Michael Flynn’s ReAwaken America Tour, where he would be amongst a list of speakers that feature actress Roseanne Barr and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, in what the ADL describes as “a series of controversial far-right conferences held across the United States featuring prominent QAnon influencers, anti-vaxx activists, election fraud conspiracy theorists” and other political figures.
The Las Vegas tour stop will be taken place the weekend of Aug. 25.
Robinson’s campaign was reached for comment and they provided full video of the comments that had been circulating on social media but did not offer a response to the inquiry about ReAwaken America.