The woman who assaulted Republican Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz at a town hall event in Pensacola, Florida, last week ran in Florida’s Democratic Primary election in 2016.
Amanda L. Kondrat’yev, who threw a cup of unknown red liquid at the congressman as he exited an event, has a history in politics. She ran in the Democratic Primary election for Florida’s 1st Congressional District in 2016, the district that Gaetz would go on to win, according to Ballotpedia. (RELATED: ‘Milkshaking’ Crosses The Pond, Matt Gaetz Gets Doused In Pensacola)
During the early stages of that race, Gaetz and Kondrat’yev feuded over the presence of a large cross in a public park in Pensacola.
Kondrat’yev is the lead plaintiff in a case filed by the Freedom from Religion Foundation and the American Humanist Association that alleged the presence of the cross in a public space violated the establishment clause of the First Amendment of the Constitution. Gaetz challenged Kondrat’yev to a debate on the matter, and while Kondrat’yev accepted, the debate never occurred.
Soon after, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida ordered the cross be taken down, a ruling that was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
The case is currently pending before the U.S. Supreme Court, where Becket Law, the pro-religious liberty law firm representing the city, has asked that it be merged with the Bladensburg Peace Cross case, which was recently heard for oral argument at the Supreme Court. (RELATED: These Boys Were Killed In The First World War — Now The Supreme Court Must Decide If Their Cross-Shaped Memorial Can Stand)
Aside from her courtroom activism, Kondrat’yev is also a proud member of Antifa, the leftist street gang that has been known to inflict violence on conservatives across the U.S. and Europe. Physical altercations between conservative politicians and Antifa in both the U.K. and U.S. are nothing new and have escalated since the election of President Donald Trump in 2016.
Unlike many Antifa members, however, she is also involved in traditional electoral politics and supported Bernie Sanders during his failed bid for the 2016 presidential nomination of the Democratic Party. She can even be seen participating in Sanders rallies during that period and was referred to as a “progressive Valkyrie” by her fellow leftists.
Kondrat’yev has not expressed regret for her actions and took to social media shortly after the incident to solicit funds for her impending legal costs. The fundraiser was initially set to a $1,000 goal and has since been increased to $2,000 and now $3,000 as those goals were completed. In the comments of the fundraiser, supporters of Kondrat’yev have lauded her actions, saying “So pleased you didn’t miss” and calling her an “American Hero.”
Kondrat’yev was charged with battery upon her arrest and has been released on a $1,000 bond.