Trump's call for protests was met with a muted response from supporters


Trump's call for protests was met with a muted response from supporters

 Former President Donald Trump's calls for protests ahead of his expected indictment in New York have drawn mostly muted responses from his supporters, with even some of his most ardent loyalists dismissing the idea as a waste of time or a decoy for law enforcement.

The discrepancy raises questions about whether Trump can lead the Republican contender in the 2024 presidential race, who retains a loyal following, can still rally far-right supporters as he did more than two years ago before the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection in the Capitol. He also suggests that the hundreds of arrests that followed the Capitol riot, not to mention the convictions and long prison sentences, may have dampened the desire to repeat mass unrest.

However, New York law enforcement continues to closely monitor online chatter warning of protests and violence if Trump is arrested, with threats of varying accuracy and credibility, four officials told the Associated Press. Officials said the messages, posted primarily on the Internet and in chat groups, included calls for armed protesters to block law enforcement officers and try to stop any possible arrests.

The Young Republican Club of New York announced plans to protest at an undisclosed location in Manhattan on Monday, and incendiary but isolated posts appeared on fringe social media platforms from supporters calling for an armed confrontation with law enforcement at Trump's Florida estate, Mar-A. -logo.

But nearly two days after Trump claimed on his Truth Social platform that he expected to be arrested on Tuesday and urged his followers to protest, there was little sign that his appeal had inspired his supporters to organize and rally around an event like the Jan. 6 rally. Indeed, a prominent organizer of the rallies leading up to the Capitol riot posted on Twitter that he intended to stay on the sidelines.

Ali Alexander, as an organizer of the Stop the Steal movement that has organized rallies to promote Trump's baseless claims that Democrats stole the 2020 election from him, warned Trump supporters that they would "go to jail or worse" if they protested in New York City.

"You have no freedom or rights there," he wrote on Twitter.

One of Alexander's allies in the Stop the Steal campaign was conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who amplified allegations of election fraud on his Infowars show. Alexander said he spoke to Jones, and neither would protest this time.

"We've both had enough of fighting against the government," Alexander wrote. "No billionaire covers our bills."

This contrasts with the days leading up to the Capitol riot when Trump electrified his supporters when he called them to Washington for a "big protest" on Jan. 6, tweeting: "Be there, you'll be wild!" Thousands of Trump supporters stormed the Capitol that day, breaking through windows and violently clashing with officers in an unsuccessful attempt to stop Congress' certification of Democrat Joe Biden's victory.

Since then, about 1,000 participants have been arrested, many of whom have racked up excessive legal bills and expressed remorse and regret in court for their actions. Some complained of feeling abandoned by Trump.

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