House

Republicans call for Judiciary hearing into unrest in cities run by Democrats

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Top Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee are calling for a hearing into violence and “civil unrest seen in Democrat-run cities” during recent demonstrations against police brutality across the country.

In a letter sent to Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday, the GOP lawmakers accused Democrats of failing to prevent violence or condemn far-left activist groups like antifa, and argued that a stronger stance needs to be taken to keep cities safe and prevent the destruction of property.

“Dear Chairman Nadler: Violent left-wing extremists are destroying Democrat-run American cities. As parts of these cities literally burn, prominent Democrat leaders look the other way on lawlessness and disorder. 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,’ ” the Republicans wrote.

“The Democrats’ acceptance and tacit encouragement of violence has real consequences. It is beyond time that you forcefully denounce left-wing violent extremism and convene a Committee hearing to examine the civic unrest plaguing Democrat-run cities,” they added.

The letter was led by Rep. Jim Jordan (Ohio), the top GOP lawmaker on the panel, and signed by Reps. Ken Buck (R-Colo.), Mike Johnson (R-La.) and Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.), who are all Judiciary subcommittee ranking members. They argued that “left-wing agitators” have been exploiting peaceful protests against systemic racism, citing sometimes violent protests in cities including Portland, Ore.; Seattle; Minneapolis; Kenosha, Wis.; Washington, D.C. and New York City.

The GOP lawmakers allege that polling forced Democrats to take “a tougher stance on the violence and looting” and that they are attempting to employ “blame-shifting tactics” toward President Trump. 

“There are two specific actions that you can take now to help restore law and order to Democrat-run American cities: 1. Publicly and forcefully denounce left-wing violent extremism and acknowledge that leftwing violence is neither ‘imaginary’ nor a ‘myth.’ 2. Immediately convene a hearing of the Judiciary Committee to examine the civil unrest caused by left-wing violent extremists in Democrat-run cities. This is an issue of life and death that the Committee must not ignore,” they continued.

Republicans have made “tough on crime” messaging a central component of the party’s campaign strategy, touting Trump’s approach during demonstrations while taking aim at far-left calls to defund the police and alleging Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and his running mate Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) are not taking a hard enough stance against violence.

Biden told an NBC affiliate station in Lancaster, Pa., on Monday that he condemns “violence no matter who it is” including acts committed by members of antifa during an interview. Biden also previously stated he does not agree with calls to defund the police.

Tags D.C. Donald Trump Jerrold Nadler Jim Jordan Jim Sensenbrenner Joe Biden Ken Buck kenosha Mike Johnson Minneapolis New York Portland Protests Seattle Washington

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