Trump Supporters Planning To Storm Capitol Again On March 4, Lawmaker Warns
A leading Democrat has warned that supporters of Donald Trump may be planning another attack on the US Capitol on March 4.
Adam Smith, who chairs the House Armed Service Committee, confirmed that nearly 5,000 National Guard troops would remain in Washington DC through next month over concerns about potential violence. CNN reports that the fears stem from online chatter among QAnon supporters who believe that Trump could return as president on March 4.
This latest conspiracy stems from another extremist movement – known as the sovereign citizens – who believe among other things that the current US government is illegitimate. QAnon supporters have adapted the sovereign citizen conspiracy theory to claim that Trump will be inaugurated as the President of the ‘true’ United States on March 4 – which used to be the official inauguration day before the date was moved to January 20 in 1933.
‘ Why that’s relevant, God knows,’ Smith said, continuing, ‘At any rate, now they are thinking maybe we should gather again and storm the Capitol on March 4 – that is circulating online.’
Speaking to defence officials on Wednesday, February 17, Smith stressed that a second attack on March 4 was ‘probably not’ going to happen, saying ‘stuff like that circulates all the time’. Nevertheless, US Capitol Police have requested 4,900 National Guard troops to remain stationed in DC until March 12, in part due to the potential QAnon threat.
A spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security said that no ‘specific, credible threat’ had been received, but acknowledged the continue risk posed by QAnon believers and far-right extremists.
In a statement to CNN, they said:
The most significant terrorism-related threat currently facing the nation comes from lone offenders and small groups of individuals inspired by domestic extremist ideological beliefs, including those based on false narratives spread over social media and other online platforms.
In the wake of President Joe Biden’s inauguration, which passed peacefully despite fears of repeat violence, Republican lawmakers have called for the National Guardsmen deployed in Washington to return to their individual states, however Smith said that some form of presence would likely still be required, and blamed some Republican officials for continuing to refuse to publicly accept the outcome of the 2020 election.
‘I agree that the threat environment is less, but if you want to know what’s driving the threat environment, it would be helpful if every single elected official and person in a position of power in this country publicly acknowledged that Joe Biden was the dually elected president in a free and fair election,’ he said.
‘The degree to which people are still driving that narrative, that narrative then gets taken and put into really wacky sets of arguments.’
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