The danger that still remains

I’m tired of a lot of things lately. COVID-19 is one. Donald Trump is another.

Judges might have just about had their fill[1] of Trump and his supporters’ 2020 election challenges;[2] we’re starting to see rulings punishing the lawyers.[3]

Meanwhile, Julia Ioffe is blistering about a persistent political and journalistic elite imagination dating back before that election[4]

that if and when Trump loses, sanity will be restored and things will go back to normal. This was and remains a delusional fantasy. There is no unseeing what Trump showed us about our country. And there is very little that will undo the damage he’s done, not by a Republican party that remains in his thrall, and not by toothless Democratic investigations that drag on for so long that voters forget to care.[5]

This necessarily includes Joe Biden’s entirely ludicrous (only especially in hindsight) imagination that the Republicans would return to bipartisanship.[6] Ioffe’s point, I think, is that Biden’s delusion was not his alone; shared widely, it has led to a complacency about the threat that Trump poses to the political system.[7]

This reduces those court challenges to a sideshow to the main act: a deepening and still evidence-free insistence that the election was stolen which continues to be embraced by a significant portion of the U.S. population and which drives Republican “investigations,” “audits,” and general intransigence as even those Republicans who initially resisted Trump’s narrative capitulate or are sidelined.[8]

Trump benefits from being underestimated.[9] Despite all he has done and all that has been done on his behalf, it’s conventional to wonder whether he will run in 2024, even as it is apparent his delusional raging narcissism will never accept defeat.[10]

Trump’s January 6 coup attempt was marked by complacency and collaboration on the part of some who were entrusted with the U.S. Capitol’s defense; Republican politicians were and are complicit. The question, even as that attempt’s often really rather ordinary participants face trial and conviction, is whether it is really over.[11] The Confederate flags may have all but disappeared from Pittsburgh area front yards; Trump campaign flags, both from 2020 and looking forward to 2024, most definitely have not.

I am looking at a Supreme Court that may interpret the Second Amendment to permit at least most people to carry concealed weapons.[12] I am looking at the Kyle Rittenhouse verdict as enabling lynching.[13] I am looking at a Trumpian self-righteousness that declares, “Fuck Your Feelings”[14] and “Make a Liberal Cry,” that excludes entirely the legitimacy of any dissent from their views,[15] that indeed would let people die because they don’t want to wear masks, because they don’t want to get vaccinated against COVID-19.[16] I am looking at a right-wing militia movement that, while far from monolithic and united, still very well might come to Trump’s aid.[17] And I am seeing a dangerous and malicious stupidity.

If anything, Ioffe understates the danger. This is a threat[18] that has not gone away.

  1. [1]Robert Barnes, “Supreme Court denies Trump allies’ bid to overturn Pennsylvania election results,” Washington Post, December 8, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/supreme-court-trump-pennsylvania-election-results/2020/12/08/4d39e16c-397d-11eb-98c4-25dc9f4987e8_story.html; Robert Barnes, “Supreme Court dismisses bid led by Texas attorney general to overturn the presidential election results, blocking Trump’s legal path to a reversal of his loss,” Washington Post, December 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/supreme-court-texas-election-trump/2020/12/11/bf462f22-3bc6-11eb-bc68-96af0daae728_story.html; Devlin Barrett, “Judge dismisses Gohmert lawsuit seeking to stymie Biden electoral college count,” Washington Post, January 1, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/gohmert-court-filing-claims-pence-is-not-a-glorified-envelope-opener/2021/01/01/eeb6b222-4c51-11eb-839a-cf4ba7b7c48c_story.html; Aaron Blake, “Trump lawyers suffer embarrassing rebukes from judges over voter fraud claims,” Washington Post, November 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/11/11/trump-lawyers-suffer-embarrassing-rebukes-judges-over-voter-fraud-claims/; Kyle Cheney and Josh Gerstein, “Donald Trump’s brutal day in court,” Politico, December 4, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/04/donald-trump-in-court-443010; John Kruzel, “Supreme Court rejects Gohmert’s last-ditch election suit against Pence,” Hill, January 7, 2021, https://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/533161-supreme-court-rejects-gohmerts-last-ditch-election-suit-against; Jon Swaine, “In scathing opinion, federal judge dismisses Trump campaign lawsuit in Pennsylvania,” Washington Post, November 21, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/us-judge-dismisses-trump-campaign-lawsuit-in-pa/2020/11/21/cc097fbe-2c50-11eb-9b14-ad872157ebc9_story.html; Elizabeth Thompson, “Texas congressman suggests street violence after judge rejects his legal effort to overturn election,” Chicago Tribune, January 2, 2021, https://www.chicagotribune.com/election-2020/ct-louie-gohmert-violence-20210102-yozij4rzhffkhn3e4epyrrsa7m-story.html; Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  2. [2]Kim Bellware and John Wagner, “Letter from 1,500 attorneys says Trump campaign lawyers don’t have ‘license to lie,’” Washington Post, December 8, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/12/08/trump-lawyer-letter/; Kyle Cheney, “Gohmert suit may force Pence’s hand in effort to overturn Trump’s defeat,” Politico, December 28, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/28/gohmert-suit-pence-overturn-trumps-defeat-451485; Kyle Cheney and Josh Gerstein, “Trump sought to tap Sidney Powell as special counsel for election fraud,” Politico, December 20, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/19/sidney-powell-trump-special-counsel-448694; Marjorie Cohn, “Trump’s Frivolous Lawsuits Are the Tip of the Iceberg in His Refusal to Concede,” Truthout, November 11, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trumps-frivolous-lawsuits-are-the-tip-of-the-iceberg-in-his-refusal-to-concede/; Pam Fessler, “Led By Giuliani, Trump Campaign Effort To Stop Certification Falters In Pennsylvania,” National Public Radio, November 17, 2020, https://www.npr.org/2020/11/17/936027693/led-by-giuliani-trump-campaign-effort-to-stop-certification-falters-in-pennsylva; Josh Gerstein, “Trump campaign revises Pennsylvania suit, again,” Politico, November 18, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/11/18/trump-pennsylvania-election-lawsuit-437996; Josh Gerstein, “Lawyers retreat from pro-Trump election suit,” Politico, July 12, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/07/12/lawyers-pro-trump-suit-499252; Simon Lewis, “Trump unveils $207 million fundraising haul after election in effort to overturn result,” Reuters, December 3, 2020, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-trump-fundraising/trump-unveils-207-million-fundraising-haul-after-election-in-effort-to-overturn-result-idUSKBN28E012; Hannah Rabinowitz and Holmes Lybrand, “Al Gore ‘was a man’ about his election loss, unlike Trump, federal judge says,” CNN, November 22, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/11/22/politics/al-gore-trump-election-capitol-riot/index.html; Aram Roston and Brad Heath, “Trump campaign spent more than $2 million on election lawyers, including Jenna Ellis,” Reuters, December 4, 2020, https://www.reuters.com/article/usa-election-trump-expenses/trump-campaign-spent-more-than-2-million-on-election-lawyers-including-jenna-ellis-idUSKBN28E2VG; Philip Rucker, Amy Gardner, and Josh Dawsey, “Trump uses power of presidency to try to overturn the election and stay in office,” Washington Post, November 19, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-uses-power-of-presidency-to-try-to-overturn-the-election-and-stay-in-office/2020/11/19/bc89caa6-2a9f-11eb-8fa2-06e7cbb145c0_story.html; Stephanie Saul, “Lindsey Graham’s Long-Shot Mission to Unravel the Election Results,” New York Times, November 17, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/17/us/politics/lindsey-graham-georgia-trump-biden.html; Felicia Sonmez et al., “A frustrated Trump redoubles efforts to challenge election result,” Washington Post, December 20, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/tuberville-electoral-challenge-trump-conversation/2020/12/20/1658573e-42db-11eb-b0e4-0f182923a025_story.html; Paula Reed Ward, “Federal judge to consider whether to dismiss case filed by Trump campaign in Pa.,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, November 17, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/federal-judge-to-consider-whether-to-dismiss-case-filed-by-trump-campaign-in-pa/
  3. [3]Jaclyn Diaz, “An Appeals Court Has Suspended Rudy Giuliani’s Ability To Practice Law In D.C.,” National Public Radio, July 8, 2021, https://www.npr.org/2021/07/08/1014047881/an-appeals-court-has-suspended-rudy-giulianis-ability-to-practice-law-in-d-c; Rosalind S. Helderman, “‘The stuff of which violent insurrections are made:’ Federal judge punishes Colorado lawyers for 2020 election lawsuit,” Washington Post, August 4, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/colorado-sanctions-trump-lawsuit/2021/08/04/704dec92-f53a-11eb-a49b-d96f2dac0942_story.html; Rosalind S. Helderman, “Judge orders two lawyers who filed suit challenging 2020 election to pay hefty fees: ‘They need to take responsibility,’” Washington Post, November 22, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/they-need-to-take-responsibility-federal-judge-orders-hefty-fees-assessed-against-two-lawyers-who-filed-suit-challenging-2020-election/2021/11/22/b7ff5392-4be7-11ec-b0b0-766bbbe79347_story.html; Erica Orden, Veronica Stracqualursi, and Katelyn Polantz, “Rudy Giuliani suspended from practicing law in New York state,” CNN, June 24, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/06/24/politics/rudy-giuliani-suspended-law/index.html; Peter Stone, “Rudy Giuliani Is (Probably) Screwed,” New York, October 1, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/10/rudy-giuliani-is-probably-screwed.html; Jan Wolfe, “‘Profound abuse’: Judge disciplines pro-Trump lawyers over election lawsuit,” Reuters, August 25, 2021, copy in possession of author; Jan Wolfe and David Thomas, “Judge eyes sanctions on pro-Trump lawyers who claimed voter fraud,” Reuters, July 12, 2021, https://www.reuters.com/legal/government/judge-blasts-ex-trump-lawyer-sidney-powell-over-lawsuit-overturn-us-election-2021-07-12/
  4. [4]Julia Ioffe, “Murdoch’s Big Lie and Putin at the Gates,” Puck News, November 23, 2021, https://puck.news/murdochs-big-lie-and-putin-at-the-gates/
  5. [5]Julia Ioffe, “Murdoch’s Big Lie and Putin at the Gates,” Puck News, November 23, 2021, https://puck.news/murdochs-big-lie-and-putin-at-the-gates/
  6. [6]Perry Bacon, Jr., “Does Biden Really Think Republicans Will Work With Him? And Could He Be Right?” FiveThirtyEight, January 19, 2021, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/does-biden-really-think-republicans-will-work-with-him-and-could-he-be-right/; Eric Bradner and Gregory Krieg, “Joe Biden predicts a post-Trump ‘epiphany’ for Republicans,” CNN, May 14, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/14/politics/joe-biden-republicans-trump-epiphany/index.html; Moira Donegan, “What does Biden have in common with Trump? Delusional nostalgia,” Guardian, June 21, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jun/21/joe-biden-trump-sexism-delusional-nostalgia; Matt Ford, “Someone Please Tell Joe Biden That Bipartisanship Is Dead,” New Republic, June 12, 2019, https://newrepublic.com/article/154183/someone-please-tell-joe-biden-bipartisanship-dead; Martin Pengelly, “‘Short and not especially sweet’: Lindsey Graham called Biden over Trump support,” Guardian, August 16, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/aug/16/lindsey-graham-joe-biden-hunter-call-trump-support; William Rivers Pitt, “Mitch McConnell Says Bipartisanship Is ‘Over.’ Believe Him,” Truthout, July 7, 2021, https://truthout.org/articles/mitch-mcconnell-says-bipartisanship-is-over-believe-him/; Matt Viser, “Biden once asserted Republicans would have an ‘epiphany.’ Now he admits he doesn’t understand them,” Washington Post, May 6, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/biden-once-asserted-republicans-would-have-an-epiphany-now-he-admits-he-doesnt-understand-them/2021/05/06/a8204a84-ae77-11eb-acd3-24b44a57093a_story.html; Paul Waldman, “Joe Biden still hasn’t learned the lessons of the Obama presidency,” Washington Post, December 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/12/06/joe-biden-still-hasnt-learned-lessons-obama-presidency/
  7. [7]Julia Ioffe, “Murdoch’s Big Lie and Putin at the Gates,” Puck News, November 23, 2021, https://puck.news/murdochs-big-lie-and-putin-at-the-gates/
  8. [8]Steve Almond, “The GOP’s Final Act In A Long Public Surrender,” WBUR, February 13, 2021, https://www.wbur.org/cognoscenti/2021/02/13/donald-trump-impeachment-insurrection-gop-mcconnell-acquittal-steve-almond; Associated Press, “State Sen. Doug Mastriano opens Pennsylvania election audit plan,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, July 7, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pennsylvania-state-sen-doug-mastriano-opens-election-audit-plan/; Associated Press, “Pennsylvania election audit gets GOP campaign trail embrace,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, July 18, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pennsylvania-election-audit-gets-gop-campaign-trail-embrace/; Associated Press, “GOP senator’s plan to issue Pennsylvania election subpoenas ‘stopped,’” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 19, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/gop-senators-plan-to-issue-pennsylvania-election-subpoenas-stopped/; Associated Press, “Republicans start election ‘investigation’ in Pennsylvania,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 9, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/republicans-start-election-investigation-in-pennsylvania/; Rachael Bade, Josh Dawsey, and Tom Hamburger, “Trump pressures congressional Republicans to help in his fight to overturn the election,” Washington Post, December 9, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-republicans-biden-election/2020/12/09/abd596ea-3a4e-11eb-9276-ae0ca72729be_story.html; Devlin Barrett, “Trump’s remarks before Capitol riot may be investigated, says acting U.S. attorney in D.C.,” Washington Post, January 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/federal-investigation-capitol-riot-trump/2021/01/07/178d71ac-512c-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html; Peter Beaumont, “Donald Trump fans cry betrayal as he rebukes Capitol violence,” Guardian, January 8, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/jan/08/trump-incites-anger-among-acolytes-let-down-by-lack-of-support; Katie Benner and Catie Edmondson, “Pennsylvania Lawmaker Played Key Role in Trump’s Plot to Oust Acting Attorney General,” New York Times, January 23, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/23/us/politics/scott-perry-trump-justice-department-election.html; Aaron Blake, “3 takeaways from the Senate report on Trump’s brazen efforts to overturn the 2020 election,” Washington Post, October 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/10/07/3-takeaways-senate-report-trumps-brazen-efforts-overturn-2020-election/; Aaron Blake, “The GOP’s fanciful defense of Trump’s DOJ plot,” Washington Post, October 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/10/07/gops-fanciful-defense-trumps-doj-plot/; Mark Bray, “Trump’s Baseless Fraud Accusations Are Already Sparking Far Right Violence,” Truthout, November 9, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trumps-baseless-fraud-accusations-are-already-sparking-far-right-violence/; Luke Broadwater, “Republicans, Wary of Political Fallout, Steer Clear of Rally for Riot Suspects,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/us/politics/republicans-justice-for-j6-rally.html; Miranda Bryant, “Trump faces pressure from Republicans to drop ‘corrosive’ fight to overturn election,” Guardian, November 22, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/nov/22/trump-republicans-pressure-fight-overturn-election; Daniel Bush, “The post-Trump identity crisis that’s fracturing the GOP,” Public Broadcasting System, February 5, 2021, https://www.pbs.org/newshour/politics/the-post-trump-identity-crisis-thats-fracturing-the-gop; Ashton Carter et al., “All 10 living former defense secretaries: Involving the military in election disputes would cross into dangerous territory,” Washington Post, January 3, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/10-former-defense-secretaries-military-peaceful-transfer-of-power/2021/01/03/2a23d52e-4c4d-11eb-a9f4-0e668b9772ba_story.html; Stephen Caruso, “Pa. conservatives’ hopes for subpoena-fueled election investigation quashed by political reality,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, November 22, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/election-2020/pa-conservative-hopes-for-subpoena-fueled-election-investigation-quashed-by-political-reality/; Stephen Caruso, “GOP leaders — once again — say they can’t overturn election results, but send letter disputing results to Congress,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, December 4, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/election-2020/gop-leaders-once-again-say-they-cant-overturn-election-results-but-send-letter-disputing-results-to-congress/; Stephen Caruso, “Pa. election audit a ‘very real possibility,’ top Pa. Senate Republican says after meeting activists,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, June 17, 2021, https://www.penncapital-star.com/government-politics/pa-election-audit-a-very-real-possibility-argall-says-after-meeting-activists/; Jonathan Chait, “Trump Floats Coup Plan That’s So Wild Even Rudy Giuliani Is Terrified,” New York, December 19, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/12/trump-coup-sidney-powell-martial-law-michael-flynn-meltdown.html; David Charter, “Trump announces law chief Bill Barr has quit as electoral college backs Joe Biden,” Times, December 15, 2020, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/trump-announces-law-chief-bill-barr-has-quit-as-electoral-college-backs-joe-biden-wnzzxkczt; Kyle Cheney and Josh Gerstein, “Trump sought to tap Sidney Powell as special counsel for election fraud,” Politico, December 20, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/19/sidney-powell-trump-special-counsel-448694; Kyle Cheney and Josh Gerstein, “‘Almost schizophrenic’: Judge rips DOJ approach to Jan. 6 prosecutions,” Politico, October 28, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/10/28/almost-schizophrenic-judge-rips-doj-approach-to-jan-6-prosecutions-517442; Marjorie Cohn, “Trump’s Frivolous Lawsuits Are the Tip of the Iceberg in His Refusal to Concede,” Truthout, November 11, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trumps-frivolous-lawsuits-are-the-tip-of-the-iceberg-in-his-refusal-to-concede/; Stephen Collinson, “Trump’s army takes aim at 2022 touting his election lies,” CNN, March 23, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/23/politics/trump-mo-brooks-election-lie/index.html; Angela Couloumbis, “Pa.’s legislative leaders wield extraordinary power, and the election audit fight proves it,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 27, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pa-s-legislative-leaders-wield-extraordinary-power-and-the-election-audit-fight-proves-it/; Josh Dawsey and Michael Scherer, “Trump asserts his dominance inside GOP, pushing Republicans to embrace his false claims of fraud,” Washington Post, October 14, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-gop-fraud-claims/2021/10/14/f37887fe-2cfc-11ec-985d-3150f7e106b2_story.html; Reid J. Epstein, “Michigan Republicans Debunk Voter Fraud Claims in Unsparing Report,” New York Times, June 23, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/23/us/politics/michigan-2020-election.html; Deb Erdley, “Toomey censure remains on hold with Pennsylvania Republicans,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, February 27, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/toomey-censure-remains-on-hold-with-pennsylvania-republicans/; Pam Fessler, “Led By Giuliani, Trump Campaign Effort To Stop Certification Falters In Pennsylvania,” National Public Radio, November 17, 2020, https://www.npr.org/2020/11/17/936027693/led-by-giuliani-trump-campaign-effort-to-stop-certification-falters-in-pennsylva; Lauren Fox, Jeremy Herb, and Phil Mattingly, “Congressional GOP grapples with ‘unhinged’ Trump,” CNN, December 23, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/23/politics/congress-gop-trump-veto/index.html; Jonathan Freedland, “This is no conventional coup. Trump is paving the way for a ‘virtual Confederacy,'” Guardian, November 13, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/nov/13/trump-coup-virtual-confederacy-race-legal-trumpian; Jamie Gangel et al., “New details about Trump-McCarthy shouting match show Trump refused to call off the rioters,” CNN, February 12, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/02/12/politics/trump-mccarthy-shouting-match-details/index.html; Amy Gardner, “‘I just want to find 11,780 votes’: In extraordinary hour-long call, Trump pressures Georgia secretary of state to recalculate the vote in his favor,” Washington Post, January 3, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-raffensperger-call-georgia-vote/2021/01/03/d45acb92-4dc4-11eb-bda4-615aaefd0555_story.html; Amy Gardner, “Trump pressured a Georgia elections investigator in a separate call legal experts say could amount to obstruction,” Washington Post, March 11, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-call-georgia-investigator/2021/01/09/7a55c7fa-51cf-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html; Amy Gardner, Emma Brown, and Rosalind S. Helderman, “Wisconsin and Arizona make it official as Trump fails to stop vote certification in all six states where he contested his defeat,” Washington Post, November 30, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/arizona-wisconsin-certify-election/2020/11/30/ec161756-3338-11eb-b59c-adb7153d10c2_story.html; Josh Gerstein, “Judge suggests feds are too lenient toward Jan. 6 defendants,” Politico, August 9, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/08/09/judge-feds-lenient-jan-6-503052; David A. Graham, “This Isn’t Normal, Either,” Atlantic, June 5, 2021, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2021/06/isnt-normal-either/619102/; Sadie Gurman and Jacob Gershman, “Barr Says No Evidence Voter Fraud Changed Election Outcome,” Wall Street Journal, December 1, 2020, https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-campaign-files-more-election-challenges-in-wisconsin-michigan-11606849219; Jennifer Haberkorn, “Republicans block House resolution calling on Pence to remove Trump over Capitol riot,” Los Angeles Times, January 11, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2021-01-11/republicans-block-house-resolution-to-call-on-pence-to-remove-trump-over-capitol-riot; Jennifer Haberkorn and Evan Halper, “7 Republicans vote guilty, but Senate acquits Trump in attack on Capitol,” Los Angeles Times, February 13, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2021-02-13/senators-to-continue-questioning-likely-to-vote-on-impeachment-today; Maggie Haberman and Annie Karni, “Pence Said to Have Told Trump He Lacks Power to Change Election Result,” New York Times, January 5, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/05/us/politics/pence-trump-election-results.html; Rosalind S. Helderman, “Arizona ballot review commissioned by Republicans reaffirms Biden’s victory,” Washington Post, September 24, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/arizona-ballot-review-draft-report/2021/09/24/7c19ac08-1562-11ec-b976-f4a43b740aeb_story.html; Fred Hiatt, “Trump is putting this country through something unprecedented. Here are three scenarios,” Washington Post, November 15, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/trump-wants-to-overturn-the-results-of-a-free-and-fair-election-theres-a-word-for-that/2020/11/13/cb94b77e-25b6-11eb-952e-0c475972cfc0_story.html; Kristen Holmes and Veronica Stracqualursi, “Trump pressured Georgia governor in call to help overturn Biden’s win in state,” CNN, December 5, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/05/politics/trump-georgia-brian-kemp-phone-call/index.html; Ed Kilgore, “Trump’s Kind of Coup Is Indeed a Contested Election,” New York, July 15, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/07/trumps-kind-of-coup-is-indeed-a-contested-election.html; Seung Min Kim, Josh Dawsey, and Toluse Olorunnipa, “Republicans plunge into open battle over attempts to overturn Trump’s loss to Biden,” Washington Post, December 22, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-republicans-election-fight/2020/12/22/fa0c2744-446b-11eb-b0e4-0f182923a025_story.html; Marissa J. Lang et al., “After thousands of Trump supporters rally in D.C., violence erupts when night falls,” Washington Post, November 15, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md-va/2020/11/14/million-maga-march-dc-protests/; Marianne Levine and Melanie Zanona, “McConnell warns Senate Republicans against challenging election results,” Politico, December 15, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/2020/12/15/mcconnell-gop-election-results-445524; Eric Levitz, “The GOP Got Away With All of It,” New York, November 3, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/11/virginia-election-glenn-youngkin-win-analysis-trump.html; Simon Lewis, “Trump unveils $207 million fundraising haul after election in effort to overturn result,” Reuters, December 3, 2020, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-trump-fundraising/trump-unveils-207-million-fundraising-haul-after-election-in-effort-to-overturn-result-idUSKBN28E012; Meredith McGraw, “Trump reemerges on the trail and plays the hits of yore,” Politico, June 5, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/06/05/trump-north-carolina-speech-gop-492000; David Montgomery, “What Wyoming Really Thinks of Liz Cheney,” Washington Post, October 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/magazine/2021/10/07/wyoming-voters-liz-cheney/; Jennifer Morrell, “I watched the GOP’s Arizona election audit. 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Hsu, “Oath Keepers founder draws scrutiny from federal officials and followers,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/rhodes-oath-keepers-capitol-riot/2021/09/16/a6a872c0-10b6-11ec-a511-cb913c7e5ba0_story.html; Associated Press, “Gun-toting far-right protesters try to force their way into Oregon’s Capitol,” Los Angeles Times, December 22, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2020-12-22/tensions-rise-inside-and-outside-of-oregons-capitol; Katie Balevic, “3 Washington schools went into lockdown after far-right anti-mask protestors tried to access property,” Insider, September 4, 2021, https://www.insider.com/three-washington-schools-lockdown-proud-boys-protest-masks-enter-schools-2021-9; Moriah Balingit, “Armed militia helped a Michigan barbershop open, a coronavirus defiance that puts Republican lawmakers in a bind,” Washington Post, May 12, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/coronavirus-michigan-republicans-whitmer/2020/05/12/54975e1a-9466-11ea-82b4-c8db161ff6e5_story.html; Ted Barrett, Manu Raju, and Peter Nickeas, “US Capitol secured, woman dead after rioters stormed the halls of Congress to block Biden’s win,” CNN, January 6, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/06/politics/us-capitol-lockdown/index.html; Laura Bliss and Marie Patino, “Tracking the Shifting Shape of Far-Right Political Violence,” CityLab, October 16, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-16/is-far-right-political-violence-getting-worse; Zak Cheney-Rice, “We Can Probably Stop Asking Trump If He’s a White Supremacist,” New York, September 30, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/09/trump-tells-proud-boys-to-stand-by-still-white-supremacist.html; Matt Cohen, “Armed Picnics and Snipers at Family Dollar: Life in a Town With a Government-Approved Militia,” Mother Jones, August 26, 2021, https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2021/08/virginia-militia-bedford-campbell-county/; Eric Cortellessa, “US far-right extremists are now calling social distancing a Nazi policy,” Times of Israel, April 17, 2020, https://www.timesofisrael.com/us-far-right-extremists-are-now-calling-social-distancing-a-nazi-policy/; Ryan Deto, “Photos: About 120 protest in Downtown Pittsburgh, calling for Pennsylvania to reopen during coronavirus pandemic,” Pittsburgh City Paper, April 20, 2020, https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/photos-about-120-protest-in-downtown-pittsburgh-calling-for-pennsylvania-to-reopen-during-coronavirus-pandemic/Content?oid=17167012; Ryan Deto, “Report says a Pittsburgh Police officer requested to join extremist group Oath Keepers,” Pittsburgh City Paper, November 3, 2021, https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/report-says-a-pittsburgh-police-officer-requested-to-join-extremist-group-oath-keepers/Content?oid=20486134; Rod Dreher, “Eric Metaxas’s American Apocalypse,” American Conservative, December 10, 2020, https://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/eric-metaxas-trump-bloodshed-american-apocalypse-live-not-by-lies/; Josie Ensor, “Fears for Biden inauguration as FBI warns of ‘armed uprising’ and pro-Trump protests in 50 state capitals,” Telegraph, January 12, 2021, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2021/01/11/fears-biden-inauguration-fbi-warns-armed-pro-trump-protests/; Barton Gellman, “The Secret World of Extreme Militias,” Time, September 30, 2010, http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2022636,00.html; Mike Giglio, “A Pro-Trump Militant Group Has Recruited Thousands of Police, Soldiers, and Veterans,” Atlantic, November 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2020/11/right-wing-militias-civil-war/616473/; Mike Giglio, “What’s Next for the Militias?” Intercept, January 20, 2021, https://theintercept.com/2021/01/20/capitol-riot-militias/; Bryan Armen Graham, “‘Swastikas and nooses’: governor slams ‘racism’ of Michigan lockdown protest,” Guardian, May 3, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/may/03/michigan-gretchen-whitmer-lockdown-protest-racism; Megan Guza And Paul Peirce, “Western Pa. police ready for any election-related shenanigans, as report warns of possible militia violence,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 30, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/westmoreland/western-pa-police-ready-for-any-election-related-shenanigans-as-report-warns-of-possible-militia-violence/; Max Hauptman, “What to know about Rise of the Moors, an armed group that says it’s not subject to U.S. law,” Washington Post, July 4, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2021/07/04/moorish-sovereignty-rise-of-the-moors/; Peter Hermann, Marissa J. Lang, and Clarence Williams, “Pro-Trump rally descends into chaos as Proud Boys roam D.C. looking to fight,” Washington Post, December 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/proud-boys-protest-stabbing-arrest/2020/12/13/98c0f740-3d3f-11eb-8db8-395dedaaa036_story.html; Spencer S. Hsu, Tom Jackman, and Devlin Barrett, “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say,” Washington Post, January 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/conspiracy-oath-keeper-arrest-capitol-riot/2021/01/19/fb84877a-5a4f-11eb-8bcf-3877871c819d_story.html; Spencer S. Hsu, Rachel Weiner, and Tom Jackman, “Self-styled militia members in three states began planning in November for recruits, weapons ahead of Capitol breach, U.S. alleges,” Washington Post, January 27, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/self-styled-militia-members-in-three-states-began-planning-in-novembe-for-recruits-weapons-ahead-of-capitol-breach-us-alleges/2021/01/27/f13b0bfc-60b9-11eb-9061-07abcc1f9229_story.html; Fred Kaplan, “Is America in the Early Stages of Armed Insurgency?” Slate, September 8, 2020, https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/america-insurgency-chaos-trump-violence.html; Michael Kimmel, “America’s angriest white men: Up close with racism, rage and Southern supremacy,” Salon, November 17, 2013, https://www.salon.com/control/2013/11/17/americas_angriest_white_men_up_close_with_racism_rage_and_southern_supremacy/; Kimberly Kindy, “Boosted by the pandemic, ‘constitutional sheriffs’ are a political force,” Washington Post, November 2, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/constitutional-sheriffs-elections-trump-pandemic/2021/11/01/4c14c764-368b-11ec-91dc-551d44733e2d_story.html; Hannah Knowles, Annie Gowen, and Tom Hamburger, “‘A dark, empty place:’ Public officials face personal threats as tensions flare,” Washington Post, December 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/public-officials-threatened-covid-election/2020/12/13/680bd380-3be7-11eb-bc68-96af0daae728_story.html; Talia Lavin, “The Violent Crescendo of the MAGA Conspiracies,” New Republic, January 6, 2021, https://newrepublic.com/article/160814/trump-protesters-attack-us-capital; Sophie Lewis, “Arizona Republican Party asks followers if they’re willing to die to overturn election results,” CBS News, December 10, 2020, https://www.cbsnews.com/news/arizona-republican-party-twitter-election-results-death-overturn/; Colleen Long, Michael Balsamo, and Michael Kunzelman, “FBI warns of plans for nationwide armed protests next week,” Associated Press, January 11, 2021, https://apnews.com/article/fbi-warns-armed-protests-next-week-ec75b26289166b4afd30c15b0dd2ded5; Jamie Martines And Tom Davidson, “Protesters in Pittsburgh demand Gov. Wolf to reopen businesses amid coronavirus pandemic,” Tribune-Review, April 20, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/protesters-gather-in-pittsburgh-demanding-gov-wolf-reopen-businesses-amid-coronavirus-pandemic/; Robert Mackey, “Neo-Fascist Proud Boys Exult Over Trump Telling Them to ‘Stand By,’ Not Stand Down,” Intercept, September 30, 2020, https://theintercept.com/2020/09/30/neo-fascist-proud-boys-exult-trump-telling-stand-not-stand/; Mary B. McCord, “Armed Militias Are Taking Trump’s Civil War Tweets Seriously,” Lawfare, October 2, 2019, https://www.lawfareblog.com/armed-militias-are-taking-trumps-civil-war-tweets-seriously; Luke Mogelson, “The Militias Against Masks,” New Yorker, August 17, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/24/the-militias-against-masks; Danielle Moran, Laura Bliss, and Sarah Holder, “Cities Gird for Election Day Unrest,” CityLab, October 26, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-26/cities-gird-for-election-day-unrest; Ciara O’Rourke, “How Oath Keepers Are Quietly Infiltrating Local Government,” Politico, December 9, 2020, https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/12/09/oath-keepers-far-right-group-infiltrate-local-government-texas-443773; Joshua Partlow, “Politics at the point of a gun,” Washington Post, July 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/07/28/conservative-armed-militias-protests-coronavirus/; Rashawn Ray and Rebecca Shankman, “How COVID-19 is changing the gun debate,” Brookings, June 17, 2020, https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2020/06/17/how-covid-19-is-changing-the-gun-debate/; Kaleigh Rogers, “Jan. 6 Has Given The Right Hundreds Of New Martyrs,” FiveThirtyEight, September 22, 2021, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/jan-6-has-given-the-right-hundreds-of-new-martyrs/; Kayla Ruble, Laura Vozzella, and Devlin Barrett, “Whitmer plotters also discussed kidnapping Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, FBI agent testifies,” Washington Post, October 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/ralph-northam-gretchen-witmer-kidnapping-plot/2020/10/13/26b4e31a-0d5f-11eb-b1e8-16b59b92b36d_story.html; Katie Shepherd, “Armed protesters alleging voter fraud surrounded the home of Michigan’s secretary of state,” Washington Post, December 7, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/12/07/michigan-sos-benson-armed-protest/; Isaac Stanley-Becker and Tony Romm, “Pro-gun activists using Facebook groups to push anti-quarantine protests,” Washington Post, April 19, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2020/04/19/pro-gun-activists-using-facebook-groups-push-anti-quarantine-protests/; Rebecca Tan et al., “Trump supporters storm U.S. Capitol, with one woman killed and tear gas fired,” Washington Post, January 7, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trump-supporters-storm-capitol-dc/2021/01/06/58afc0b8-504b-11eb-83e3-322644d82356_story.html; Aruna Viswanatha, “Conspiracy Charges Filed Over Capitol Riot,” Wall Street Journal, January 19, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/first-conspiracy-charges-filed-over-capitol-riot-11611080191; Amy B. Wang, “Lawmakers denounce GOP Rep. Brooks for appearing sympathetic to Capitol bomb threat suspect,” Washington Post, August 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/08/19/lawmakers-denounce-gop-rep-brooks-appearing-sympathetic-capitol-bomb-threat-suspect/; Kelly Weill, “Sixteen ‘Boogaloo’ Followers Have Been Busted in 7 Days,” Daily Beast, October 9, 2020, https://www.thedailybeast.com/with-the-gov-gretchen-whitmer-busts-16-boogaloo-followers-have-been-busted-in-7-days/; Rachel Weiner, “Man who claimed to have bomb near Capitol charged with threatening to use ‘weapon of mass destruction,’” Washington Post, August 20, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/roseberry-capitol-bomb-threat-charges-court/2021/08/20/3dadc848-01ce-11ec-ba7e-2cf966e88e93_story.html; Rachel Weiner and Spencer S. Hsu, “Virginia ‘Bible study’ group was cover for violent militia plans, prosecutors say,” Washington Post, July 6, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/legal-issues/capitol-riot-bible-study-group-militia/2021/07/06/e5e6cd26-de82-11eb-ae31-6b7c5c34f0d6_story.html; Whitney Wild et al., “Police identify suspect who surrendered after claiming to have a bomb near US Capitol,” CNN, August 19, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/19/politics/us-capitol-suspected-explosives/index.html; Jason Wilson, “Proud Boys are a dangerous ‘white supremacist’ group say US agencies,” Guardian, October 1, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/oct/01/proud-boys-white-supremacist-group-law-enforcement-agencies; Matt Zapotosky, Devlin Barrett, and Abigail Hauslohner, “FBI charges six who it says plotted to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, as seven more who wanted to ignite civil war face state charges,” Washington Post, October 8, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/michigan-governor-kidnap-plot/2020/10/08/0032e206-0980-11eb-9be6-cf25fb429f1a_story.html
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