According to a report from CNN, leaders of the fledgling pro-Trump "Patriot Party" are seeking to put some distance between themselves and the Proud Boys who have recently been declared a terrorist group in Canada.
With multiple members of the Proud Boys taken into custody over the Capitol attack on Jan. 6th, a recent Patriot Party rally in Pennsylvania that was sparsely attended ended with participants walking back to their cars -- which had been vandalized -- and denying involvement with the far-right extremist group even though the organizer of the rally has bragged about being a prominent member.
According to the CNN report, a recent Patriot Party Facebook post -- since taken down -- implored members, "We need to organize our militia ... Wars are won with guns... an when they silence your commander in chief you are in a war."
That exhortation to build an armed citizen militia echoes the Proud Boys, with organizer Richard "Dick" Schwetz saying the Pennsylvania Patriot Party "awareness march" has nothing to do with the Proud Boys.
"This isn't about the Proud Boys. It's about the Patriot Party," he told an interviewer before complaining about the questions.
As CNN reports, "We hung around talking to people for a few more minutes, then headed back to the parking lot, where we found a strange scene. The Patriot Party supporters were distraught. And some were wearing different clothes. At least eight were wearing Lehigh Valley Proud Boys hoodies, some with yellow bandannas. One was wearing a strikingly similar black-and-gold Patriot Party hoodie."
Asked about the connection by CNN, Scvhwetz replied, "I don't know, I never heard of them, never heard of those guys."