QAnon started creeping into mainstream media on the coattails of the Russian disinformation campaign that targeted US elections in 2016. Recent social media and opinion polls indicate there are at least hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people who believe in at least some of the bizarre theories offered up by QAnon. Wikipedia states that between March and June 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, QAnon activity nearly tripled on Facebook and nearly doubled on Instagram and Twitter. By that time, QAnon had spread to Europe, from the Netherlands to the Balkan Peninsula. It maintains an especially strong following in Germany.
Two of three GOP candidates that have been sympathetic or supportive of the group have been elected to Congress: Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Congressional candidate for Georgia’s 14th district seat, and Lauren Boebert, who beat a Trump-backed, five-term incumbent during primary elections for Colorado’s 3rd district. The Hill reported that as early as May 2019, the FBI identified conspiracy theories as to potential domestic terrorism threats, specifically identifying QAnon as stated in their document.