Ted Cruz Asks U.S. to Designate Antifa a Terrorist Organization

A flag bearing the logo of the group Antifa is seen at a rally held in solidarity with anti-fascist demonstrators in Berkley. CA.

On Thursday, Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.) introduced a resolution condemning the violent acts carried out by antifa and calling for the U.S. to designate the group a domestic terrorist organization.

"Antifa is a group of hateful, intolerant radicals who pursue their unhinged agenda through aggressive violence," Cruz said in a statement. "Time and time again their actions have demonstrated that their only purpose is to inflict harm on those who oppose their views. The hate and violence they spread must be stopped, and I am proud to introduce this resolution with Senator Cassidy to properly identify what Antifa are: domestic terrorists."

"Antifa are terrorists, violent masked bullies who ‘fight fascism’ with actual fascism, protected by Liberal privilege," Cassidy added. "With bullies, they get their way until someone says no. There must be courage, not cowardice, from the elected officials who allow violence against the innocent."

The resolution mentions the gruesome attack against and hospitalization of Quillette editor Andy Ngo last month at the hands of a mob organized by Rose City Antifa. It also notes that antifa, "because they believe that free speech is equivalent to violence, have used threats of violence in pursuit of suppressing opposing political ideologies."

Cruz's resolution also mentions the antifa threats against Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials, who were "subjected to doxxing and violent threats after their social media profiles, phone numbers, and home addresses were posted on the Internet by left wing activists." It also mentions the case of one ICE officer who "had his name and photo plastered on flyers outside his home accusing him of being part of the 'Gestapo.'"

The resolution also notes that the ICE office in southwest Portland, Ore., was shut down for days due to threats and occupation. Cruz and Cassidy omitted the most recent case of such violence, in which self-described antifa member Willem Van Spronsen threw incendiary devices at an ICE detention center in Tacoma, Wash. He was killed in a shootout with police. The local antifa group hailed him as a "comrade" and a "martyr," and said his death should inspire more "protest and direct action."

Van Spronsen also condemned ICE centers as "concentration camps," echoing the inciting language of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). Ocasio-Cortez has yet to denounce this act of violence arguably inspired by her rhetoric.

The resolution calls for organizations under the antifa banner to be designated domestic terrorist groups, "unequivocally condemns the violent actions of antifa groups as unacceptable acts for anyone in the United States," stresses the need for peaceful communication, urges any U.S. organization to voice opinions without using violence, and calls upon the federal government to fight all forms of domestic terrorism, including white supremacist terrorism.

Since the full text of S.Res. 279 is not yet visible on Congress.gov, PJ Media is publishing the resolution here:

Title: Calling for the designation of Antifa as a domestic terrorist organization.

Whereas members of Antifa, because they believe that free speech is equivalent to violence, have used threats of violence in the pursuit of suppressing opposing political ideologies;

Whereas Antifa represents opposition to the democratic ideals of peaceful assembly and free speech for all;

Whereas members of Antifa have physically assaulted journalists and other individuals during protests and riots in Berkeley, California;

Whereas in February of 2018, journalist Andy Ngo was intimidated and threatened with violence by protestors affiliated with Antifa;

Whereas on June 29, 2019, while covering demonstrations in Portland, Oregon, journalist Andy Ngo was physically attacked by protestors affiliated with Antifa;

Whereas employees of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (referred to in this preamble as “ICE”) were subjected to doxxing and violent threats after their social media profiles, phone numbers, and home addresses were posted on the Internet by left wing activists;

Whereas according to the Wall Street Journal, an ICE officer was followed by left wing activists and “confronted when he went to pick up his daughter from summer camp”, and another “had his name and photo plastered on flyers outside his home accusing him of being part of the ‘Gestapo’”;

Whereas the ICE office in southwest Portland, Oregon, was shut down for days due to threats and occupation by Antifa members;

Whereas Rose City Antifa, an Antifa group founded in 2007 in Portland, Oregon, explicitly rejects the authority of law enforcement officers in the United States, and Federal, State, and local governments, to protect free speech and stop acts of violence;

Whereas Rose City Antifa rejects the civil treatment of individuals the group labels as fascists, stating: “We can’t just argue against them; we have to prevent them from organizing by any means necessary.”; and

Whereas there is no place for violence in the discourse between people in the United States, or in any civil society, because the United States is a place where there is a diversity of ideas and opinions: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) calls for the groups and organizations across the country who act under the banner of Antifa to be designated as domestic terrorist organizations;

(2) unequivocally condemns the violent actions of Antifa groups as unacceptable acts for anyone in the United States;

(3) expresses the need for the peaceful communication of varied ideas in the United States;

(4) urges any group or organizations in the United States to voice its opinions without using violence or threatening the health, safety, or well-being of any other persons, groups, or law enforcement officers in the United States; and

(5) calls upon the Federal Government to redouble its efforts, using all available and appropriate tools, to combat the spread of all forms of domestic terrorism, including White supremacist terrorism.

Follow Tyler O'Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.