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Air Force warns troops to avoid pro-Trump ‘patriot’ rally: Report

Minot Air Force Base (Air Force)
November 21, 2023

United States military leadership at the Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota recently sent service members a text message warning them that their “continued service” could be in jeopardy if they attended a local rally featuring a speaker from an organization that has historically been supportive of former President Donald Trump.

The text message to Minot Air Force Base personnel, which was obtained by Fox News, stated, “Leaders, please exercise caution if downtown this weekend.”

The text message cautioned any base personnel who were thinking of going into town while the event was taking place last Friday to “be careful” and “reach out for any concerns.”

The event mentioned by Air Force leadership was the “Dakota Patriot Rally,” which took place at the state fairgrounds in Minot. Leadership warned Air Force members that some of the people attending the rally “could be confrontational to military members.” The text message also warned military members that the featured guest speaker would be from Turning Point Action, which leadership claimed was an “alt-right organization.”

In the text message sent to the Air Force base’s service members, leadership warned “participation with groups such as Turning Point Action could jeopardize their continued service in the U.S. military.”

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According to the Dakota Patriot Rally’s website, the rally’s featured speaker was Turning Point Action Chief Operating Officer Tyler Bower, a “conservative activist” who joined Turning Point USA after serving in multiple political positions.

Contacted by Fox News regarding the event, an anonymous Turning Point Action spokesperson explained that the recent “Dakota Patriot Rally” event was not officially recognized by the organization; however, the spokesperson described the threatening message sent by Air Force leaders as “absolutely appalling.”

“Tyler Bowyer was simply a keynote speaker. Secondly, Turning Point Action is not alt-right, it’s a mainstream conservative organization, and Tyler Bowyer is not some fringe personality—he’s the COO of TPAction, an RNC committeeman from the state of Arizona, and one of the most accomplished political organizers in the country,” the spokesperson stated. “Lastly, Mr. Bowyer and attendees of this event are not ‘confrontational to military members,’ they’re some of the US Military’s most ardent supporters.”

The Turning Point Action spokesperson also emphasized the “shocking and totally unacceptable” concept that military members could jeopardize their careers by participating with Turning Point Action.

“How dare they dissuade servicemen and women from affiliating with conservative groups and leaders,” the spokesperson added. “This should set off alarm bells throughout North Dakota and DC, that something is terribly wrong at the Minot Air Force base.”

The Turning Point Action spokesperson said the Air Force text message should result in an “immediate” hearing and investigation by Congress, adding that whoever sent the controversial text message “should be held accountable.”

“It’s exactly this type of poison that has caused the Air Force to miss its recruiting goal for the first time in decades,” the spokesperson concluded.