Last week, during proceedings connected to one of the many federal criminal cases tied to the Capitol riot, the Justice Department warned “that former President Donald Trump’s delusional claims that he’ll be reinstated to the White House could fuel more political violence from his supporters,” as recapped by CNN. Trump has been apparently harboring the idea that he will or at least could be reinstated as president by August of this year — meaning next month — because of supposed evidence of the imaginary election fraud that Trump has insisted is responsible for Biden’s win. There is no legitimacy to either the election fraud idea or the idea of an imminent Trump reinstatement.
Justice Department personnel sounded a metaphorical alarm about Trump’s rhetoric in the case of rioter Alex Harkrider, who has been subjected to GPS monitoring ahead of his trial since getting released from custody in April. Harkrider is currently facing a slew of federal criminal charges, including counts that are related to his possession of a tomahawk ax while at the Capitol on January 6. Harkrider, who has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, has requested the removal of the GPS monitoring, and in response, prosecutors said that “Trump’s rhetoric could inspire Harkrider to become violent in the future,” as CNN summarized it.
Prosecutors wrote as follows:
‘Former President Trump continues to make false claims about the election, insinuate that he may be reinstalled in the near future as President without another election, and minimize the violent attack on the Capitol… Television networks continue to carry and report on those claims, with some actually giving credence to the false reporting… The defendant in this case is not a good candidate to be out in the community without electronic monitoring to ensure the safety of the community and the safety of democracy in the current environment.’
It’s certainly troubling for circumstances to be such that federal prosecutors feel the need to warn about the “safety of democracy.” Just this weekend, Trump went on Fox, where he told host Maria Bartiromo that he was the rightful winner of the 2020 presidential election, despite the fact that authorities of both major political parties and from every single state have attested to the integrity of the election results. On Fox, Trump ranted that “the people aren’t standing for” the “rigged election,” which sounds troublingly close to an attempted excuse from the former president for violence like what unfolded at the Capitol. He has already tried to justify what happened, writing on Twitter shortly after the violence that “these are the things and events that happen” when an election victory is stolen — which, of course, did not actually take place.