EXCLUSIVE: Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee on Friday wrote to Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-NY, requesting a hearing into the funding source behind riots that tore through cities across the country over the summer.
“We write to urge you to immediately call a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee to investigate the funding source of the riots plaguing cities across America,” reads the letter, obtained by Fox News. “We are concerned with the Committee’s lack of oversight of this matter and urge you to consider this request.”
The letter was signed by Reps. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz.; Jim Jordan, R-Ohio; Ken Buck, R-Colo; Doug Collins, R-Ga.; Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wis.; Greg Steube, R-Fla.; Guy Reschenthaler, R-Pa.; Louie Gohmert, R-Texas; Tom Tiffany, R-Wis.; Debbie Lesko, R-Ariz.; and Ben Cline, R-Va.
Protests and riots erupted in cities in the wake of the death of George Floyd in police custody in May. Some, in places like Portland, Ore., continued for months — raising questions about if they were spontaneous or were organized and funded by outside left-wing groups.
Republicans have pointed in particular to the role Antifa plays in such violence. The lawmakers note that Attorney General Barr recently said there was evidence that Antifa and other groups were involved in instigating violence.
The Republicans accused Nadler of downplaying the threat from Antifa as a “myth” and of failing to conduct oversight “of the forces behind these organized riots.”
“Instead we have spent our limited time conducting partisan Committee business that does not help us advance safety and prosperity for the American people,” they wrote. “We urge you to accept that Antifa and other domestic extremist groups pose a real threat to our communities and to call hearings to investigate the funding sources of these riots.”
The Trump administration has identified New York City, Portland and Seattle as “local governments that are permitting anarchy, violence, and destruction in American cities.” Trump has also announced a plan that will designate Antifa as a terrorist organization.
The letter to Nadler comes after a number of House Republicans urged the FBI to investigate who has been funding the riots and to bring appropriate charges.
“The Department of Justice and FBI’s leadership is needed to bring to justice those who have funded these criminal organizations and to give justice to the communities who have been devastated by these individuals and organizations,” that letter said.