On Wednesday night during the debate over the certification of Joe Biden’s election, Congressman Matt Gaetz said there was “pretty compelling evidence from a facial recognition company showing that 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.”
The representative apparently was citing a Washington Times article that was taken down on Thursday after the attorney for XRVision instructed the publication to “‘Cease and Desist’ from any claims regarding sourcing of XRVision analytics, to retract the current claims, and publish an apology,” according the company’s statement released yesterday.
In tweet, Gaetz that he “cited a Wash Times publication with requisite caveat.” However, he refused to apologize or admit his statement was false.
The Washington Times article XRVision had used its facial recognition software and had matched two Philadelphia antifa members and another individual who had attended Black Lives Matter protests. The newspaper claimed its source was a retired military officer.
XRVision stated it didn’t generate any composites or detections for the Washington Times or for any “retired military officer.” The company did perform analysis shortly after the rioting started and “concluded that two of the individuals (Jason Tankersley and Matthew Heimbach) were affiliated with the Maryland Skinheads and the National Socialist Movements” – known Nazi organizations. The third individual (Jake Angeli) was linked to QAnon.
Gaetz added to his tweet: “If it isn’t true, the point still stands that our nation has endured both left and right wing violence & I condemn it all.”