Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick issued a warning to the left-wing anti-fascist group Antifa to stay out of the state in the wake of the El Paso mass shooting, despite reports that the shooting suspect had ties to the far right and was a vocal supporter of Donald Trump.
Patrick spoke to Fox News in the wake of the deadly shooting outside a Walmart in El Paso, taking aim at the group for a planned visit in September for what it called a “Border Resistance” military training tour. Antifa is a loosely assembled, largely leaderless group that opposes fascism.
It has long existed in Europe as a response to violent, far-right nationalist groups, and in the United States groups identifying themselves as Antifa have increased sharply since the election of Donald Trump. These groups often show up to events planned by far-right and white supremacist groups, often engaging in violent clashes.
In the hours after the deadly El Paso shooting, Patrick told the group they were not welcome in Texas.
“Stay out of Texas, basically,” Patrick said. “We don’t need them coming in on September 1. We didn’t need them coming in before this happened.”
Antifa has become a popular target of Donald Trump, who mused on Twitter that he may classify it as a terrorist group. Critics assailed Trump, noting that he has made no such threats against far-right groups accused of violence.
There have not been any reports connecting alleged El Paso shooting suspect Patrick Crusius to Antifa. In the wake of mass shootings, some internet trolls have falsely claimed that shooting suspects were connected to Antifa, but the group has not been connected to any mass shootings.
TX Lt. Gov Dan Patrick warns Antifa, who was planning to come to El Paso, to stay out of TX after the Walmart tragedy
“Stay out of El Paso. Stay out of TX … scratch TX off your map and don’t come in … it is not the time and place for them to come at any time… stay out of TX” pic.twitter.com/JdNxCAUPqL
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) August 3, 2019
Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick explicitly warned the left-wing group Antifa against coming to the state following Saturday's mass shooting at an El Paso Walmart. https://t.co/f9XLWnZtLK
— ALPHA PRO (@DTMsport) August 3, 2019
While Antifa has largely been identified as a far-left group, El Paso shooting suspect Patrick Crusius has not been connected to any groups on the left, and in fact his alleged social media pages show what appeared to be a right wing leaning.
As The Inquisitr had previously reported, Crusius frequently praised Donald Trump and re-tweeted the president. The Dallas resident appeared to be a supporter of Donald Trump’s border wall. More unconfirmed reports claim that before the shooting, Crusius posted a manifesto espousing white supremacy and other far-right sentiments.
This manifesto, though widely shared on social media and by groups including the Southern Poverty Law Center, has not been confirmed as legitimate or as being written by the shooting suspect.