The president has told advisers he isn’t deterred by the setbacks in the courts and won’t be deterred by Congress certifying Joe Biden’s win.
White House Reporter
Many of Donald Trump’s most dogmatic supporters see a mass protest in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 6—just two weeks shy of Inauguration Day 2021—as their last chance to disrupt President-elect Joe Biden’s win. But for the president himself, it’s just another day to complain.
Two people familiar with the matter say that in recent days, Trump has told advisers and close associates that he wants to keep fighting in court past Jan. 6 if members of Congress, as expected, end up certifying the electoral college results.
“The way he sees it is: Why should I ever let this go?… How would that benefit me?” said one of the sources, who’s spoken to Trump at length about the post-election activities to nullify his Democratic opponent’s decisive victory.
The president’s exact plans for the Jan. 6 events remain unclear, and it has been common for him to lend his support to these rallies or protests via enthusiastic-sounding tweets, only to then stop short of doing much else. Since last week, Trump has asked certain aides and allies what they think would be good ideas for him to mark the occasion, such as a speech, a flyover, or a recorded video, the sources said.
The day should not lack for drama. Several House Republicans, as well as Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), have signed on to a quixotic, destined-to-fail effort to object to the certification of the electoral college’s results. Wednesday’s rally-goers want to pressure more Republicans to join the effort—or even, quite literally, block Democrats from reaching Congress.
“Must block Dem and [Republicans in Name Only],” one planning graphic posted on pro-Trump forum “The Donald” read, showing a map of key streets around Congress that protesters want to obstruct. “There’s 535 politicians and ~3500 guards.”
On the day itself, protesters plan to meet in the northeast corner of the Capitol complex, where they’ll hear from a list of speakers that includes Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Trump adviser Roger Stone, and Rep-elect Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), who has supported the QAnon conspiracy theory. Trump has promoted the protest on Twitter, urging his supporters to attend.
“Be there, will be wild!” Trump tweeted on Dec. 19.