INDIANAPOLIS – A Trump-aligned Indiana organization supporting disgraced Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore and Congressman Jim Banks has the former head of a white supremacist group as its founder and leader, reports show.
The Indy Star and NBC News have both reported that Caleb C. Shumaker, the head of the Washington, Ind.-based super PAC known as Indiana First PAC, was the first chairman of the National Youth Front, “an organization described as the youth wing of the white nationalist American Freedom Party,” according to the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and Anti-Defamation League.
According to the SPLC, the National Youth Front recruits young Americans in “a declaration of war” designed “to stop the ongoing defamation of our people.” AYoutube video on the account of a Caleb Shumaker describes America as “a nation ethnically fractured by a failed utopian social experiment of massive immigration and multiculturalism,” and an interview found by NBC includes Shumaker stating at one point, “I am a white nationalist.” A letter that appears on the American Freedom Party’s website and attributed elsewhere to “Caleb C. Shumaker, Chairman, National Youth Front” in 2015 includes the lines:
“There has been a lack of nationalist spirit in our youth, a lack of pride for ourselves and our people. If we are to survive we must embrace its ideals with a zealousness. It is imperative to reject socialist and antiwhite agendas. To refute and shame feminist ideologies that cripple the integrity and pride of a man and pit our sexes against each other.”
Shumaker claims he was only briefly involved with the group, telling the Starthat he left when he realized the group that he was the first to lead had a racist message, and stating to NBC that that he left when the American Freedom Party “got involved.” However, the SPLC stated clearly in 2015 that the National Youth Front was the “newly formed youth wing… of the American Freedom Party.” Both the SPLC and the head of the American Freedom Party said that Shumaker did not leave voluntarily but was instead “forced out” due to a backlash stemming from his interracial marriage.
Shumaker’s new Super PAC, Indiana First, appears to have been formed during the week of November 9, though it has not registered with the FEC or filed a statement that it’s an independent expenditure-only group, per NBC.
So far, the bulk of the group’s efforts have focused on electing Roy Moore, the bigoted Alabama judge abandoned by the vast majority of Republicans after a Washington Post report unveiled multiple instances of pedophilia by Moore. Outside of Moore and Trump, the only candidate Indiana First appears to have endorsed is Congressman Banks.
“There is no place in Indiana politics – or anywhere in America – for groups led by bigots and white supremacists. There’s no place for Indiana First PAC, or groups like it,” said Will Baskin-Gerwitz, Senior Media Strategist for the Indiana Democratic Party. “Congressman Banks and his colleagues need to show where they stand and condemn both Mr. Shumaker’s views and the group he leads immediately.”