Joy Reid defends violent Antifa militants: 'They’re just anti-fascists’

MSNBC's Joy Reid said that Antifa are just "anti-fascists" and "don't really show up anywhere."

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

In response to Rep. Louis Gohmert saying to Capitol Police that Antifa operatives would be disguised as Trump supporters on Jan. 6 to cause trouble, MSNBC's Joy Reid said that Antifa, the group Gohmert insinuated would agitate the mob, are just "anti-fascists" and "don't really show up anywhere."

"The night before Jan. 6—Jan. 5—that evening I was talking to Capitol Police officers and I said, you know, let's face it, most of the conservatives that come, they don't have any intention of being violent," said Gohmert in a clip.

"And they said, well, we've been briefed today that there's a good bit of, as I understood, online activity that there are people that are going to be coming that hate Trump but they're going to dress up in red, MAGA Trump paraphernalia to try to blend in and create trouble," Gohmert continued.

Reid said that whoever caused the Capitol Hill riot, whether it be Antifa or "zombies" like a Capitol Hill officer described, could've been discovered with the Jan. 6 commission.

"In fact, if what Louie Gohmert claims is true that it was Antifa or zombies or poltergeist or aliens from the Planet Koozebane, who were the real culprits on Jan. 6, a bipartisan commission could have gotten to bottom of that," said Reid. "But Gohmert, like most of the Republicans, voted against it. Instead, he got to grill [FBI] Director Wray on how he has characterized the attack."

Reid asked former FBI special agent Clint Watts if Gohmert had been warned about an "influx of Antifa" and did the FBI do enough, adding though that Antifa are "just anti-fascist, they don't really show up anywhere."

"…let’s just listen to Louie Gohmert, and if he's claiming that he was being told by Capitol Police officers that there was going to be an influx of Antifa who they have claimed were basically the devil, they're just anti-fascist, they don't really show up anywhere, if we're seeing in some of these cases where is Proud Boys and et cetera are saying that they anticipated that Antifa would come fight them, that Black Lives Matter supporters would come fight them so that Donald Trump could them impose the insurrection and act and they could act as a militia. We're seeing that in so cases," said Reid. "Did the FBI do enough?"

"I do not, Joy, for a couple different reasons. One, I testified to the Senate in 2019 on this exact issue, domestic terrorism. There is no domestic terrorism statute by which there's a designation process allowing the FBI or any investigators for that matter in the domestic space to develop intelligence. Even anticipating that a group might mobilize to something, you have to have a probable cause to start investigations on each individual case," replied Watts.


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