In the wake of violent clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia, between white supremacists and counterprotesters, the Illinois State Senate wants white nationalist and neo-Nazi groups classified as terrorist organizations.
In a resolution authorized Sunday, lawmakers urge law enforcement to “pursue the criminal elements of these domestic terrorist organizations in the same manner and with the same fervor used to protect the United States from other manifestations of terrorism.”
State Sen. Don Harmon, a Democrat who introduced the measure, said he did so in response to Saturday’s “inexcusable violence committed by white nationalist & neo-Nazi groups in Charlottesville.”
In a series of tweets, Harmon said it is “vital that we stand in total opposition to the hatred, bigotry & violence displayed by these groups.”
Hundreds of white nationalists and other right-wing groups converged Saturday on Charlottesville, which has drawn protests over the planned removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.
Counterprotester Heather Heyer was killed when a car plowed into a crowd. The driver, James Alex Fields Jr., 20, has been charged with second-degree murder and state other crimes.