Gonzales Goes Low in TX-22 Runoff, Labels Pro-2A Challenger 'Neo-Nazi'

Townhall Media/Rebecca Downs

Texas congressman Tony Gonzales lashed out at several of his fellow Republicans on CNN this weekend, including Second Amendment influencer Brandon Hererra, who's challenging Gonzales for the Republican nomination in TX-23. Gonzales responded to a question about the bitter infighting in the GOP caucus and the threats to oust House Speaker Mike Johnson by labeling several of his Republican colleagues "scumbags", and singled out Herrera by labeling him a "known neo-Nazi".  


Gonzales had some sharp words to say about his colleagues: most notably, Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla.

"It's my absolute honor to be in Congress, but I serve with some real scumbags," Gonzales said, alleging that Matt Gaetz sexually assaulted minors "at drug parties."

In 2021, the Justice Department opened an investigation into Gaetz over alleged cash payments made in exchange for sex, including to an underage girl. 

The department in 2023 dropped charges against Gaetz after prosecutors said there were credibility issues with two key witnesses. He is still under investigation by the House Ethics Committee.

Gaetz responded to Gonzales’ Sunday comments in a post on X, accusing him of lying and calling on voters to support his GOP opponent. Gaetz has repeatedly denied the allegations.

The Texas lawmaker also criticized Rep. Bob Good, R-Va., for supporting his Republican opponent, Brandon Herrera, a gun rights activist. Gonzales alleged that Herrera is a "known neo-Nazi" and referred to the Ku Klux Klan.

"Bob Good endorsed my candidate, a known neo-Nazi. These people used to walk around with white hoods at night. Now they're walking around with white hoods in the daytime," Gonzales said. 

Hererra was quick to respond to Gonzales on X/Twitter, brushing aside the smear and declaring the incumbent's campaign is in a "death spiral". 


Hererra has drawn some criticism for a 2022 YouTube video where he shot the MP-40, which was used by the German army in WWII. Hererra made several jokes about the gun, including calling it the "original ghetto blaster." Hererra's jokes may have been too flippant for some folks, but that doesn't mean he's a neo-Nazi. In fact, he concluded the video by stating

“Now what I'm about to say might be a bit of a controversial opinion but bear with me. I'm not really a big fan of fascism – commies cool your jets”.

“But when it comes down to just legendary pieces of firearm history like this, I feel privileged to be able to own it to make sure weapons like this are restored to their more or less original condition and preserved for future generations to learn from it,” he adds.

“Because the best way to not repeat history is to learn about history. And the best way that I know to get you guys to learn about history is to make really f***** up jokes about it,” he tells his viewers.


Gonzales may be butt-hurt that Bob Good endorsed Hererra instead of him, but implying the Virginia congressman is a member of the Klan while labeling Hererra a "known neo-Nazi" really does come across as a sign of desperation on his part. Good, by the way, is facing a primary challenge of his own from Virginia state Sen. John McGuire, but at least he hasn't labeled his primary opponent a fascist or falsely accused him of being an avowed Nazi. 

Yep, and I'd love to see it happen. Hererra's "f****d up jokes" might not be everyone's cup of tea, but Gonzales's smear sure seems to meet all of the requirements for a defamation lawsuit

1) a false statement purporting to be fact; 2) publication or communication of that statement to a third person; 3) fault amounting to at least negligence; and 4) damages, or some harm caused to the reputation of the person or entity who is the subject of the statement.

If Tony Gonzales has proof that Brandon Hererra is a neo-Nazi, let's see it. Otherwise, I'd call it a false statement purporting to be fact that is intended to cause harm to Hererra's reputation. 


We're still a month away from the TX-23 runoff election, which will take place on May 24th, and I doubt this will be the last attack that Gonzales launches against his primary opponent. I suspect that his attempt to smear Hererra as a neo-Nazi is going to backfire on the incumbent, but desperate times call for desperate measures, and Gonzales is clearly concerned that when the voters of TX-22 have their say he's going to be sent packing.  

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