The staff of Rep. Elise Stefanik Reportedly Supports Her ‘Pedo Grifter’ Theory About Formula Shortage

After critics Rep. Joking around Elise Stefanik (RN.Y.) for blaming the “usual pedo-grifters” for America’s infant formula shortage, her office then claimed she didn’t mean it at all.

A spokesman for the extremist lawmaker said she did not blame “pedophile” scammers, but intended “pedo” to mean “children,” writer and activist Parker Malloy reported Saturday — which still makes no sense.

“Pedo” or pedophile is a well-known dog whistle for QAnon conspiracy theorists who have unfounded belief that “pedo” Democrats are running an international child sex trafficking operation.

The strange twist after Stefanik’s outrageous Twitter post was captured in a taped phone conversation with the legislature’s office by an unidentified “voter,” Malloy reported in “The Present Age.”

Neither Stefanik nor a representative were immediately available for comment, and HuffPost could not confirm that the speaker on the recording was a spokesperson for Stefanik. But the recorded voice seemed to be identical to that on an answering machine that answered calls to Stefanik’s office.

The unknown caller asks who are the “regular pedo-grifters” Stefanik refers to in her tweet.

“First, this is her personal Twitter. You have to take that into account,” the employee responds, noting that the office has received a number of phone calls about the matter. “And #2, ‘pedo’ isn’t short for ‘pedophile’, it’s ‘pedo’, as in ‘children’.”

“So these are people robbing their children?” asks the confused caller. “How do they rob their children? Or is it children who whine?”

The person responds: “No, not children who shiver… people who shiver on behalf of children.”

When asked how that works, the spokesperson says he “cannot really analyze it”. The full call can be heard here

An employee on Friday gave a slightly different version of “pedo-grifters” to The Independent, saying they were Republicans in The Lincoln Project — but apparently didn’t even try to explain those.

Mediaite was also told Friday, apparently without explanation: “Pedo-grifters refers to the Lincoln Project.”

The Lincoln Project is a PAC founded and run by Republicans who are critical of Donald Trump. There is nothing that links the Lincoln Project to the shortage of infant formula – or to paedophilia.

Critics warned Friday that Stefanik’s irresponsible “pedo” tweet could provoke violence against alleged enemies. A gunman opened fire in 2016 at a pizza parlor in Washington, DC, which was baselessly identified as the headquarters for an alleged child trafficking operation. No one was injured. The “Pizzagate” shooter was sentenced to four years in prison.

Stefanik was also cheated over her callous appeal in her tweet to refuse infant formula to immigrant babies being processed or detained in federal facilities. The government is legally obliged to provide basic necessities in such situations.

Stefanik blames the Biden administration for America’s current infant formula shortage. The administration does not make a formula; it is made and sold by three major companies, which have little competition and strong control over the market.

The shortage was caused in part by pandemic issues in the supply chain coupled with a massive safety recall by the largest formula maker, Abbott Nutrition, which had to close its Michigan facility earlier this year over contamination concerns.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.

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