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Four Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter on Tuesday to Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-NY., criticizing him for launching “fruitless partisan investigations” into President Trump while ignoring the threat of Antifa.
The letter, which was penned by ranking member Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio and Reps. Ken Buck, R-Co., Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wisc., and Mike Johnson, R-La., calls on Nadler to denounce “left-wing violent extremism” and convene a hearing to investigate the unrest engulfing a number of cities across the country.
“You have wasted the first 20 months of your chairmanship on fruitless partisan investigations in furtherance of your obsession with attacking President Trump,” the lawmakers said in their letter. “We urge you not to waste any more time. The jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee provides you with a unique authority to condemn the violence and disorder in Democrat-run cities.”
Trump and his Republican allies have roundly blamed Antifa, a shadowy left-wing, self-described anti-fascist movement, for much of the unrest and violence in cities like Portland, Ore. Democrats in Congress, however, have sought to draw a distinction between those protesting over racial inequality and police brutality and the looting and violence that has followed some the protests.
Nadler drew sharp criticism from conservatives back in July when he told writer-produce Austen Fletcher that Antifa is “myth that’s being spread only in Washington, D.C.”
“Prominent Democrat leaders look the other way on lawlessness and disorder,” Jordan and his fellow GOP lawmakers wrote. “Even you, the chairman of the powerful Judiciary Committee with a unique platform to denounce left-wing violence, have trivialized it as ‘imaginary’ and a ‘myth.’”
While Nadler and other Democrats have remained relatively quiet on Antifa, the party’s presidential nominee, Joe Biden, issued his most forceful condemnation of the movement on Monday.
Speaking to a local news station in Pennsylvania, Biden said he condemns violence “across the board,” including from Antifa.
“I’ve condemned it across the board,” Biden told Pennsylvania’s WGAL News 8 in an interview Monday, referring to violence during protests. “The president still hasn’t condemned the far-right folks coming out and protesting and using violence.”
“Do you condemn Antifa?” reporter Barbara Barr asked Biden.
“Yes, I do, violence no matter who it is,” he replied.
The nationwide unrest was sparked by the late May death of George Floyd while in the custody of police in Minnesota.
Trump, who has denounced protesters as “thugs” while sharply defending the police, has throughout the summer cast American cities under liberal leadership as under siege by violent and lawless anarchy.
While many of the demonstrations have been peaceful, rioting and looting has broken out in multiple cities.
Fox News’ Evie Fordham contributed to this report.