A review of Masters’ website by CNN’s KFile showed he also removed controversial language saying Democrats were trying to “import” a new electorate – language that has drawn fire for reflecting conspiracies of extreme right that Democrats are trying to weaken the power of Native Americans of European descent through the mass immigration of non-white immigrants.
Both positions were on the Masters website on August 1, the day before he won the Republican primary to face Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly in the closely watched Senate race. The sections were gone by August 26, according to screenshots from the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.
Masters’ new campaign posture comes as a wave of Republican candidates nationwide attempt to distance themselves from unpopular or divisive policy positions, particularly on abortion and the legitimacy of the 2020 election, ahead of the election November mid-term.
NBC News first reported last week that Masters tried to water down his stance on abortion by removing his support for a “federal personality law” and several other tough anti-abortion stances from his website. while posting a video in which the Republican nominee took a softer stance on the issue.
A person close to Masters told CNN last week that the Republican candidate designs, codes and updates his website himself – and that his recent updates to the abortion section reflect his desire to use its political section as a “living document” rather than immutable. statement of his positions.
It’s unusual for candidates to update their major issues pages, and CNN has reached out to the Masters campaign about the changed language regarding the 2020 election.
Removed sections on immigration and 2020 elections
In early August, ‘The Masters Plan’ page, read, “We must take election integrity seriously. The 2020 election was a rotten mess – if we had had a free and fair election, President Trump would be sitting in the Oval Office today and America would be so much better for it.”
The page now only says, “We need to take election integrity seriously.”
In another section of the Masters website regarding immigration, Masters wrote, “Joe Biden and Mark Kelly caused this crisis. They canceled the construction of the border wall. They invite illegal immigrants to come here and give them housing and money. The Democrats dream of a massive amnesty, because they want to import a new electorate.”
The masters deleted the last line, which nods to the replacement conspiracy theory.
Site removed from archiving in 2018
The Masters website was temporarily removed from the Web Archive at his request, according to a spokesperson for the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.
Anyone can request that their content be removed from the Wayback Machine and netizens reported it being removed on Friday after NBC’s report. Although the removal sparked cries that Masters was trying to hide changes to his campaign website, his page was actually requested for exclusion in 2018 before he was a candidate.
“Blake Masters sent us a request to remove blakemasters.com from the Wayback Machine in 2018, long before his campaign,” the spokesperson said. “We had no idea he would become a candidate for public office and have banned the site. We have currently reactivated access to the site’s archives for the period following the posting of the Masters campaign.”
CNN’s Alex Rogers contributed to this report.