Several supporters of Donald Trump are planning to assemble in Washington to protest against certifying the results of the Presidential elections. The supporters include militia groups, conspiracy theorists, and members of the extremist group the Proud Boys. This has raised concerns about violent confrontations during the rallies, and the authorities are gearing up to tackle the crowd on Jan 6.
Washington Braces For Protests As Extremist Groups Converge
The certification process of the electoral college votes is scheduled on Jan 6th, and President-elect Joe Biden will be formally declared as the winner. Far-right groups from across the country are planning to come down to Washington in an attempt to pressure the lawmakers into voting against the certification process. Even though political experts feel that this will not have any impact on the final results, it may create some panic among the crowd and lead to violence.
Even Trump has indirectly supported several conspiracy theories about the election and encouraged his supporters to show up at the protests in Washington. He openly invited his supporters to join the protests on Jan 6th and said that it would be a historic day.
The Washington Metropolitan police department has said that they have taken enough precautions to avoid confrontations during the rallies. They have erected signs stating that carrying guns openly is illegal in the capital. Apart from that, they have also taken the support of national guard Troops in order to handle the situation. The mayor of Washington has asked the residents to avoid the Downtown area during the protests. The authorities are also considering imposing a curfew if required to curb the violence.
The authorities also warned the residents of protestors who would try to create panic during the rallies and asked them to stay at home. Several people associated with the Trump campaign and other groups have requested to hold rallies at the national park service. The national park service authorities which manage permits on Federal properties confirmed that at least three groups had been awarded permits. The authorities are expecting to allow about 15000 protesters during the event. However, law enforcement officials believe that it is practically not possible to enforce such limits during political rallies.
The chairman of the proud boys, Enrique Tarrio, was arrested on Monday in Washington in connection with an incident last month in which he set fire to a black lives matter banner. He had posted about the incident on social media. The authorities said that he was arrested while in possession of two high capacity magazines, which attracted additional charges.
Tarrio had posted on social media last week that his group would attend the protests in record numbers. He had also indicated that they do not plan to wear the signature black and gold clothing for the event. On the other hand, the group plans to go Incognito and spread across the city in small teams.
At least 23 people were arrested when the proud boys last protested in Washington in November. A lawsuit was filed against the group in connection with the violence that happened during the protests in November. The lawsuit accuses the proud boys of posing a threat to society and issuing violent messages on social media during the protests.
Even Donald Trump has directly supported the protests through his tweets. The Republicans are facing a lot of embarrassment due to the actions of Donald Trump in recent weeks. On the other hand, many political analysts feel that the protests will not be able to change the outcome of the event in any manner. The joint committee is all set to officially certify Biden as the President of the US on Jan 6. This will finally put an end to all the controversies surrounding the US Presidential elections.