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'Kill 'Em!: GOP Power Broker In Houston Leaves Chilling Voicemail For Gov. Abbott

Steve Hotze had a simple message for the Texas Governor: shoot to kill the "son-of-bitches" protesting George Floyd's murder.
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Steve Hotze is listed as a "conservative power broker" in Texas, but he's just another one of those rightwing nutjobs with money that gets an inordinate amount of media attention they don't deserve and definitely shouldn't have. Hotze appears frequently on Fox News nationally, for example, where he recently gave out quack medical advice on how to protect yourself from COVID-19.

Source: Texas Tribune

In the days after George Floyd's death in police custody in Minneapolis last month, as massive protests against police brutality spread across Texas and other states, conservative power broker Steve Hotze of Houston called Gov. Greg Abbott's chief of staff to pass along a message.

"I want you to give a message to the governor," Hotze told Abbott's chief of staff, Luis Saenz, in a voicemail. "I want to make sure that he has National Guard down here and they have the order to shoot to kill if any of these son-of-a-bitch people start rioting like they have in Dallas, start tearing down businesses — shoot to kill the son of a bitches. That’s the only way you restore order. Kill ‘em. Thank you."

The voicemail, which The Texas Tribune obtained Friday via a public information request, came on the weekend of June 6, several days after Abbott activated the Texas National Guard as some of the protests became violent. It is unclear whether Saenz responded, and Abbott's office declined to comment on the voicemail.

A Hotze spokesperson said he was not immediately available for comment.

Media Matters has more on Hotze and his recent Fox News appearance.

On Sunday, Fox News aired dangerous misinformation from Steven Hotze, a disreputable doctor who has a history of pushing “methods [that] are not supported by science and are potentially harmful” and sells bogus colloidal silver. Hotze used his Fox News platform to dismiss concerns about the coronavirus as people going “totally crazy” and told viewers to “conduct your life normally.”

Hotze is the founder and CEO of the Texas-based Hotze Health & Wellness Center, Hotze Vitamins, and Hotze Pharmacy. He appeared on a March 15 coronavirus pandemic special on Fox in which he said that “you've got to take charge of your own health” and referenced his center in urging people to build up their immune systems with vitamins (Dr. Amy Compton-Phillips, the chief clinical officer at Providence St. Joseph Health, responded in the segment by saying that interrupting transmission, not vitamins, would help stop the spread of the coronavirus).

And there's always more.

Hotze is a bigot who has claimed that “‘Satanic cults’ were driving the ‘homosexual movement,’” compared LGBTQ people to “Nazis,” and said that Houston residents should “drive” LGBTQ people "out of our city.” He has repeatedly said LGBTQ equality will promote pedophilia and prayed that lawmakers who “support, promote and practice sodomy and other perverted, sexually deviant lifestyles” would “receive just retribution from God for their evil actions.”

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