Trump's Iran brinksmanship has lost him alt-right leader Richard Spencer

At-right leader Richard Spencer
(Image credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Richard Spencer is probably best known for organizing the torch-wielding "Unite the Right" white nationalist march in Charlottesville and for leading a Nazi-like salute of President-elect Trump at an "alt-right" conference in Washington. But the white nationalist faction that supports Trump has never been a fan of Trump's hawkishness in the Middle East, and after Iran retaliated Tuesday for Trump's killing of one of its most powerful generals, Spencer said he was officially off the Trump bandwagon.

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If there was any doubt why Spencer, who put an Iranian flag in his Twitter handle, "deeply regret[s] voting for and promoting Donald Trump in 2016," he explained in a subsequent tweet.

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A significant portion of Trump's most vocal supporters, like Fox News host Tucker Carlson, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), and Spencer's alt-right brethren, backed him because of his "America First" mantra, which many of them interpreted to mean withdrawing U.S. forces from the Middle East and keeping most immigrants out of America. As Trump decides how to respond to Iran's missile strikes on Iraqi bases, it's worth keeping an eye on that slice of MAGA America.

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Peter Weber

Peter Weber is a senior editor at TheWeek.com, and has handled the editorial night shift since the website launched in 2008. A graduate of Northwestern University, Peter has worked at Facts on File and The New York Times Magazine. He speaks Spanish and Italian and plays bass and rhythm cello in an Austin rock band. Follow him on Twitter.