SPLC report: Hate groups in decline as views hit mainstream

The number of white nationalist, neo-Nazi and anti-government extremist groups across the U.S. fell for a third straight year in 2021, even as some groups were reinvigorated by the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol last year.

In its annual report, released Wednesday, the Southern Poverty Law Center says it identified 733 active hate groups in 2021, down from the 838 counted in 2020 and the 940 counted in 2019. The number of anti-government groups fell to 488 in 2021, down from 566 in 2020 and 576 in 2019.

The law center says the falling numbers don’t reflect a decline in the power of the far right, but rather suggests that extremist ideas now operate more openly in the political mainstream.