House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy reportedly told Trump, 'It's not Antifa, it's MAGA.'
Donald Trump is reportedly trying to falsely blame the deadly Capitol attack he helped foment last week on anti-fascist leftists. But even some of his strongest allies aren't buying it.
According to Axios, Trump tried to convince House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Monday that the pro-Trump rioters who violently stormed the Capitol on Wednesday were really "Antifa people" in disguise.
"It's not Antifa, it's MAGA. I know. I was there," McCarthy (R-CA) reportedly told Trump.
"We are witnessing absolute banana republic crap in the United States Capitol right now," scolded Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI). "@realdonaldtrump, you need to call this off."
"Unacceptable. Enough. Acknowledge Biden as President-Elect and end this madness. Violent rioters laid siege to the nation’s Capitol in an act of insurrection unparalleled in modern times. This is not leadership," concurred Rep. Peter Meijer (R-MI).
But many other Republican officials have attempted to spread the false claim that the attackers were really antifa activists, pretending to be Trump supporters.
"Please, don't be like #FakeNewsMedia, don't rush to judgment on assault on Capitol. Wait for investigation. All may not be (and likely is not) what appears. Evidence growing that fascist ANTIFA orchestrated Capitol attack with clever mob control tactics," Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) tweeted on Thursday.
Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) made a similar false claim during a House floor speech while trying to overturn the 2020 election results.
"Some of the people who breached the Capitol today were not Trump supporters, they were masquerading as Trump supporters and in fact were members of the violent terrorist group antifa," he told colleagues.
But while McCarthy is now apparently pushing Trump and his caucus to stop lying about Wednesday's attacks, he and most of his caucus bear much of the blame for fueling them.
McCarthy helped push the baseless election stealing conspiracies that fueled the invasion — despite privately acknowledging that President-elect Joe Biden was the legitimate winner. He and most House Republicans signed onto an amicus brief supporting an attempt by the Texas attorney general to throw out the election results in swing states won by Biden.
Trump has yet to acknowledge Biden's victory, though he has said he will leave office next Wednesday.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.