Trump supporter and alleged Capitol rioter says ‘we proudly take responsibility’ and erupts over allegations that antifa protestors stormed the building

jonathan mellis
Jonathan Mellis.

  • A Trump supporter who allegedly took part in the Capitol riots has rejected claims that antifa perpetrated the attack.
  • “Don’t you dare try to tell me that people are blaming this on antifa and BLM,” Jonathan Mellis said.
  • Some Republicans have tried to blame other groups for carrying out the attack.
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A Trump supporter who said he participated in the January 6 Capitol riot expressed frustration over allegations that other groups were responsible for the insurrection, according to legal documents first reported by the Huffington Post on Tuesday.  

“Don’t you dare try to tell me that people are blaming this on antifa and BLM,” a man named Jon Gennaro, identified by the FBI as Jonathan Gennaro Mellis, wrote on Facebook, referring to the anti-far right movement known as “antifa” and Black Lives Matter protestors. They are “too p—-,” he added.

“We proudly take responsibility for storming the Castle,” Mellis continued. “We are fighting for election integrity.”

Since a pro-Trump mob violently stormed the Capitol last month, some Republicans have attempted to cast blame elsewhere, elevating theories that antifa and Black Lives Matter protestors had disguised themselves among the former president’s supporters and carried out the siege. The FBI has said that there is no evidence to support the claims.

Mellis’ social media posts, documented in an affidavit, also push back on the GOP talking point. 

The FBI revealed several photos of Mellis at the riot and pointed to video evidence of him wielding a stick and striking police officers guarding the Capitol complex. Mellis faces multiple charges, including for assault of police officers, obstruction of law enforcement and Congress, disorderly conduct, and forced entry of restricted grounds. The FBI has made over 250 arrests in relation to the Capitol riot thus far.

Former President Donald Trump, at the time, had also told House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy in a phone call that antifa perpetrated the attack, according to an account of the conversation by Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler. McCarthy, a top Republican, has dismissed the conspiracy theory.

The Huffington Post reported that at least three other Capitol rioters have rejected claims that antifa and Black Lives Matter groups were involved.

“It was not Antifa at the Capitol,” Brandon Straka, who was charged last month, said per the Huffington Post. “It was freedom loving Patriots who were DESPERATE to fight for the final hope of our Republic because literally nobody cares about them.”

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Trump’s baseless warnings on Antifa diverted attention away from investigations into right-wing extremists

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  • Trump’s warnings about antifa diverted resources when the threat of right-wing extremism was growing.
  • The FBI and Justice Department moved agents to Portland last summer despite having 1,000 open cases. 
  • Officials have repeatedly said that they view right-wing extremism as a bigger threat.
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Former President Donald Trump’s baseless warnings about antifa and far-left extremist threats caused federal authorities to divert federal authorities’ attention from credible right-wing threats, The New York Times reported. 

Trump and those in his administration repeatedly claimed that antifa, a leaderless, non-hierarchial organization that has existed for decades, was responsible for the protests that ensued last summer following the death of George Floyd. 

The former president seized on the opportunity to try and designate the group as a domestic terrorist organization. 

Trump’s interest in the group and demand for authorities to investigate them did not stop the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation from pursuing cases of right-wing extremism but it did divert key resources away from the threat when it was growing, the Times reported. 

This included sending dozens of agents to Portland, Oregon, leaving some FBI and Justice Department officials limited resources to combat more pressing concerns, including the 1,000 domestic terrorism cases that were open at the time. 

Trump’s aides attempted to suppress the use of the phrase “domestic terrorism” and White House and Justice Department officials stopped efforts to talk about right-wing threats publically, the Times reported. 

Read more: Coronavirus variants threaten to upend pandemic progress. Here’s how 4 top vaccine makers are fighting back.

Additionally, agents and prosecutors felt “pressured” to uncover a left-wing extremist criminal conspiracy that never ended up existing, while funding that was requested for analysts to examine social media posts for threats was denied. 

In 2019, former Attorney General William Barr began an FBI briefing by asking what the agency was doing about antifa. Barr told the Times that there was no prioritization given to threats from the left and all threats were equally considered. 

“The F.B.I. already had a robust program to combat violence driven by white supremacy and nationalism,” Barr said. “I wanted there to be a comparable one for antifa and antifalike groups.”

During the spring and summer, despite finding the right-wing boogaloo movement more of a threat, the FBI opened the same amount of investigations into both them and Antifa, 40 each. 

The diversion of resources did not prevent authorities from monitoring militia groups. Agents in Michigan were able to learn that members of  Wolverine Watchmen, a self-styled antigovernment  “militia” group. planned to kidnap governors.  

In October, six members of the group were charged with attempting to kidnap Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Read the full New York Times story here >>>

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House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy reportedly snapped after the president told him ‘antifa’ led the Capitol insurrection: ‘It’s MAGA. I know. I was there.’

kevin mccarthy donald trump
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told President Trump, ” “Stop it. It’s over. The election is over.”

  • House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy had a tense phone call with President Trump on Monday in which he told the president the election was “over.”
  • After Trump said the Capitol insurrection was the work of antifa, McCarthy said, “It’s MAGA. I know, I was there,” according to Axios.
  • McCarthy, a longtime Trump supporter, went on to vote against election certification in Arizona following the Capitol siege.
  • The California representative is now arguing against impeachment, saying “it would only divide the country more.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy had a difficult phone call with President Trump on Monday, reportedly telling the president that his battle to overturn the 2020 presidential election was “over.” 

McCarthy reportedly grew exasperated with the president after he continued to complain about election fraud.

“Stop it. It’s over. The election is over,” the California Congressman said, an anonymous White House official told Axios.

In a 30-minute call that was described as at times “tense” by participants, McCarthy took the president to task for blaming the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol on “antifa.” The FBI has categorized antifa as an ideology, not an organization.

“It’s not antifa, it’s MAGA. I know. I was there,” McCarthy reportedly said to Trump. 

Trump and his followers, including Rep. Matt Gaetz, have baselessly claimed that the Capitol breach was led by antifa members impersonating Trump supporters. 

On Thursday, just hours after the Capitol insurrection was quelled, Gaetz told his fellow representatives “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.”

Rep. Paul Gosar made similar comments on Twitter, noting the insurrection had “all the hallmarks of an antifa provocation,” though the FBI found “no indication” that members of antifa were in any way involved in the violent uprising at the Capitol.

In a letter sent to his fellow Republican reps on Friday, McCarthy said there was “undisputedly” no evidence of antifa’s involvement and expressed frustration with the way the crisis had been handled. 

“Having spoken to so many of you, I know we are all taking time to process the events of that day. Please know I share your anger and your pain,” he wrote.

He stopped short, however, of encouraging Trump’s impeachment, noting on Twitter that “impeaching the President with just 12 days left will only divide our country more.” 

McCarthy has been a staunch supporter of President Trump, and repeatedly and baselessly claimed that Trump had won the presidential election.

On January 3, McCarthy told The Hill he supported challenges to Biden’s election.

“I think it’s right that we have the debate,” he said. “I mean, you see now that senators are going to object, the House is going to object – how else do we have a way to change the election problems?” 

Following the January 6 insurrection, McCarthy along with other GOP House members voted in favor of decertifying Arizona’s election results, a measure that did not pass.

Expanded Coverage Module: capitol-siege-module

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Far-right group Proud Boys claim they will attend January 6 DC rally ‘incognito’ and wear all black to blend in with antifa protesters

proud boys
Members of the Proud Boys gather in support of President Donald Trump and in protest the outcome of the 2020 presidential election near freedom plaza on December 12, 2020 in Washington, DC.

  • The Proud Boys, a far-right group, have said they will be attending the rally “incognito.”
  • They will forgo their traditional uniform of black and yellow and, instead, wear all-black.
  • Followers of antifa, an anti-fascist movement, typically appear in all-black clothing, have frequently clashed with the Proud Boys.
  • President Donald Trump has advertised a ‘stop the steal’ rally on January 6 to his followers.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Members of the far-right group, the Proud Boys, will head to Washington, DC to rally for President Donald Trump on January 6 – the day on which Congress is scheduled to meet to finalize the 2020 presidential election results.

Leaders from the group have shared with their followers that they intend to attend the rally “incognito” and wearing “ALL black.”

The Proud Boys’ chairman, Enrique Tarrio, revealed on Parler that “the Proud Boys will turn out in record numbers on Jan 6th but, this time, with a twist.”

The twist, Tarrio said, is that they will forgo their traditional uniform for something inconspicuous.

He wrote: “We will not be wearing our traditional Black and Yellow.”

The group’s standard uniform is black and yellow Fred Perry polo shirts, military armor, and MAGA hats.

Instead, the chairman explained: “We might dress in all BLACK for the occasion.”

Followers of antifa, an anti-fascist movement, typically wear all-black clothing.

antifa black
Antifa members gather behind protective shields during a Stop The Steal protest at the Georgia State Capitol on December 12th, 2020 in Atlanta, GA.

The Proud Boys intend to take further steps to blend in with other protesters.

Tarrio wrote: “We will be incognito and we will spread across downtown DC in smaller teams.”

Joe Biggs, an organizer for the group, confirmed the alleged plans on his Parler account.

In a video, he said: “We will not be attending DC in colors. We will be blending in as one of you. You won’t see us. You’ll even think we are you. “

He continued: “We are going to smell like you, move like you, and look like you. The only thing we’ll do that’s us is think like us! Jan 6th is gonna be epic.”

The Proud Boys and antifa have clashed on numerous occasions. Last month, four people were stabbed and another was shot after the two groups clashed.

In 2018, a video emerged of antifa protesters being beaten up by members of the Proud Boys in New York City

antifa proud boys
Members of the Proud Boys and antifa stand off near Black Lives Matter Plaza on December 12, 2020 in Washington, DC.

The Proud Boys gained mainstream attention after Trump name-called them at the first presidential debate

They made headlines again after Tarrio claimed responsibility for setting a Black Lives Matter banner on fire during a pro-Trump rally on December 12.

Their plans to gather in support of Trump on January 6 have worried some politicians.

The DC’s Attorney General Karl Racine told CBS News: “My level of anxiety is high. My preparation is even more intense than that.”

Racine said that he fears that the Proud Boys will “pick fights, create damage, damage property, and then act in a very threatening way.”

Trump has been accused of inciting right-wing groups to participate in violent protests on January 6.

A former top aide to Vice President Mike Pence, Olivia Troye, has said that she fears that there could be violence at this rally because “the president himself is encouraging it.”

Last month, President Donald Trump promised his supporters that there would be a “wild” rally in Washington, DC.

On Friday, the president reminded his followers that there would be a “BIG Protest Rally” taking place in the capital from 11 a.m.

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