The Atlantic

The Alt-Right’s Rebranding Effort Has Failed

Some members attempted to pivot away from overt racism. Charlottesville shows that they were always white nationalists.
Source: Joshua Roberts / Reuters

The alt-right movement has sought over the past two years to rebrand white nationalism, lifting it out of the obscure corners of the website Stormfront and elevating it into the mainstream political discussion.

In some ways the effort succeeded. President Trump’s campaign offered white nationalists a political home in the mainstream. They heard Trump’s hardline anti-immigration stances and repeated refusals to disavow racists as a dog whistle. The alt-right itself was media- and internet-savvy and appealed to a younger demographic. Its leaders became household names. Hillary Clinton even gave a speech about the movement.

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