Paul Ryan opponent says he believes ‘pizzagate’ conspiracy

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan’s Republican primary challenger says he believes an unfounded right-wing online conspiracy theory dubbed “pizzagate.”

Paul Nehlen voiced his opinion in an online question-and-answer session with voters Aug. 3 on Reddit. The conspiracy theory claims Democrats harbor child sex slaves at a pizza restaurant in Washington, D.C. The false internet rumor led a gunman to fire an assault weapon inside the pizzeria in December.

Nehlen did not explain in the conversation why he believed the conspiracy theory. But he told The Associated Press Monday that he believes “in the broader possibility that there are those in positions of power to which laws do not equally apply to them.”

Nehlen also disparaged a voter in the Reddit conversation as “retarded.” Nehlen says he was being sardonic.

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