Despite former President Donald Trump’s calls for protests in Washington D.C. on March 4th, 2021, few supporters showed up in response. The day had been touted as the “true Inauguration Day” by some QAnon conspiracy theorists, who believed that Trump would be sworn in for a second term. However, Trump’s supporters appeared to be divided on whether or not to participate in the protests, with many expressing concern that it could be a “trap” set by law enforcement agencies.
The FBI had warned of potential violence on March 4th, prompting heightened security measures around the Capitol building. National Guard troops were deployed to the area, and fencing was put up around the Capitol complex. The lack of turnout from Trump’s supporters likely contributed to the peaceful nature of the day, with no significant incidents reported.
Supporters express concerns about possible trap
Despite Trump’s repeated calls for protests, some of his supporters were hesitant to participate. Many expressed concerns that the event was a “trap” set up by law enforcement agencies to arrest those who showed up. Some supporters pointed to the fact that the event had been touted as a potential target for violence by extremist groups, leading them to believe that attending could put them at risk.
“I think it’s a trap,” said one supporter in a statement to the media. “The FBI has been warning about violence, and I don’t want to be caught up in that. I support Trump, but I don’t want to be used as a pawn.”
Other supporters cited logistical challenges, such as travel and time off from work, as reasons for not attending the protests. Despite these concerns, some supporters did show up in Washington D.C. on March 4th, although their numbers were significantly lower than expected.
Heightened security measures put in place
The lack of turnout from Trump’s supporters may have been due in part to the increased security measures put in place around the Capitol building. The FBI had warned of potential violence on March 4th, prompting the deployment of National Guard troops to the area. Fencing was also put up around the Capitol complex, and access to the area was restricted.
The heightened security measures were in response to the January 6th attack on the Capitol building, which left five people dead and dozens injured. The attack was carried out by a group of Trump supporters who had been incited by the former president’s baseless claims of election fraud.
Trump’s continued influence on his supporters
Despite the lack of turnout for the March 4th protests, Trump’s continued influence on his supporters was evident. Many of his supporters still believe his baseless claims of election fraud, and some are calling for him to run for president again in 2024.
Trump himself has remained relatively quiet since leaving office in January, but he has hinted at a potential comeback. In a statement released on March 4th, he called on Republicans to “never give up” and “never ever surrender.”
As the investigation into the January 6th attack continues, it remains to be seen how Trump’s continued influence will play out. His calls for protests on March 4th may have fallen flat, but his supporters’ loyalty to him is unlikely to wane anytime soon.