Trump’s Jan. 6 supporters feted at his Mar-a-Lago campaign launch

Trump refrained from mentioning Jan. 6 during his presidential bid announcement. But the inclusion of those who were in Washington on Jan. 6 at his Mar-a-Lago event underscores how closely linked he remains to the melee that unfolded that day. Rather than isolating and ostracizing Jan. 6 figures, Trump’s team has kept them in the fold, even promising pardons for those who were there.

And they’ve noticed. In interviews and social media posts, several of those who attended both the Jan. 6 events and Trump’s White House announcement continued to spread conspiracy theories. They believe the 2020 election may have been stolen. At least one insists that the storming of the Capitol was an inside job by Trump’s enemies designed to pin blame on him and his MAGA movement.

“Jan. 6 was a crock of shit, as pretty much anybody who was in attendance knows,” said Ian Smith, a New Jersey gym owner who made headlines when he defied Covid-19 rules and lost his race for Congress. He…

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This article was written by By Christopher Cadelago and Daniel Lippman and originally published on