Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) led a congressional hearing on the anarchist violence of Antifa framed by the co-occurring issue of protecting free speech amid peaceful protests.
Though Senator Cruz’s Antifa hearing was aimed at drawing attention to the violence being perpetrated by Antifa, the real fight was between Democrats and Republicans, with the issues divided on partisan lines.
Both sides activated their own ideological political scripts as fire power dwarfing the larger purpose of the hearing.
Republicans focused on Antifa as violent Marxists, and made a point to separate the rioters from the peaceful protests:
Rioters are not protestors & protestors are not rioters. pic.twitter.com/mnaWWC0aqH
— Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli (@HomelandKen) August 4, 2020
Democrats focused on what they called heavy-handed police tactics, which they perceive as the far bigger threat to the nation:
Republicans painted Democrats as terror sympathizers, while Democrats countered that Republicans were offering President Trump cover for authoritarianism.
Below is the full Antifa hearing, but just watching the opening statement of Senator Cruz followed by that of Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) sums up the tenor of the hearing:
But amidst the struggle to narrow in on Antifa, what stands out significantly is that partisanship has gotten so contentious that we are now finding Americans treading through murky waters when it comes to this extremist group.
Despite even the evidence that can be gathered just by looking at their tactics, why is it so difficult to agree that Antifa is essentially a terror group?
While politicians fight, Antifa is gaining an alarming level of support, clout and a platform among “regular” citizens — as well as the mainstream media — all of whom fundamentally refuse to acknowledge that the tactics used by this group to oppose fascism are fascist themselves.
Seen in Portland, Oregon.
(Photo via fed_up_Daniel) pic.twitter.com/E0vwCmrpWd
— redfish (@redfishstream) July 24, 2020
Clarion Project recently hosted a webinar with Andrew C. McCarthy, a former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York who led the 1995 successful prosecution against Islamist terrorist Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman and 11 others. In the webinar, which you can watch below, McCarthy discusses the question of whether or not to designate Antifa as a terror group: