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Burgess Owens speaking before the House Judiciary Committee in June 2019.

Republican Burgess Owens, a former NFL player, has defeated first-term incumbent Democratic Rep. Ben McAdams in Utah's 4th Congressional District, per AP.

Why it matters: Owens has appeared on podcasts and Youtube channels related to the far-right online QAnon conspiracy theory and said he thinks the conspiracy theory is worth taking a look at, though he also said that accusations of him supporting QAnon are “silly," NBC News reports.

Context: QAnon is a far-right conspiracy theory that purports without proof that posts by an anonymous internet user from within the federal government are alluding to a secret war that the "deep state" is waging against President Trump.

What they're saying: "Today, I called Burgess Owens to congratulate him on winning this hard-fought and close race," McAdams said during a virtual news conference on Monday, per the Salt Lake Tribune.

  • "My campaign was centered around a rejection of extremism and the need for leaders that will put the needs of the people they represent before any political party. I’m deeply humbled by the support I received from so many Utahns who shared that vision and want you to know that while we did not prevail, I remain committed to that ideal," McAdams added.
  • Owens later tweeted, "I received a call from [Ben McAdams] he expressed appreciation for the opportunity to serve #UT04 and his commitment to a smooth transition. My sincere thanks to him for both. Thank you my fellow Utahns, I am committed to have an open ear to serve you. Thank you for the opportunity."

Of note: Owens accepted at least $135,000 in campaign contributions that were over the legal donor limit in the final stretch of the election, the New York Times reports.

Go deeper

Off the Rails

Descent into madness

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump was sitting in the Oval Office one day in late November when a call came in from lawyer Sidney Powell. "Ugh, Sidney," he told the staff in the room before he picked up. "She's getting a little crazy, isn't she? She's really gotta tone it down. No one believes this stuff. It's just too much."

4 hours ago - Health

Meta removes over 600 accounts linked to COVID disinformation effort by China

Facebook's corporate headquarters campus in Menlo Park, California. Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP via Getty Images

Meta announced Wednesday it has removed over 600 Facebook and Instagram accounts linked to a Chinese influence operation that claimed the U.S. was pressuring the World Health Organization (WHO) to blame COVID on China.

Why it matters: Though Meta said the network was unsuccessful, it marks yet another COVID disinformation campaign instigated by China in an effort to discredit the U.S.

Stacey Abrams launches second campaign for Georgia governor

Photo: Eze Amos/Getty Images

Stacey Abrams, voting rights activist and former 2018 candidate for Georgia governor, is running for the position again in 2022. Abrams would be the first Black female governor in the country.

Why it matters: Abrams caught national attention in 2018 by narrowly losing an election to Republican Gov. Brian Kemp in a state held firmly by the GOP for nearly two decades.

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