Pro-Trump supporters rally near White House ahead of Electoral College vote

January 6, 2021 - 22:44

Pro-Trump supporters were demonstrating near the White House before Congress votes to certify the Electoral College results of the presidential election. NBC News’ Ellison Barber reports on what protesters are saying about the vote.

After months of tense anticipation, Nov. 3 came and went in the United States without major incident of violence or intimidation—much to the relief of voters, voting rights groups and law enforcement. But as President Donald Trump’s numerous lawsuits to overturn the election results failed, a new inflection point in his frenzied campaign emerged: Jan. 6, the day Congress is set to certify his loss to Joe Biden.

To Trump’s most fervent supporters, from button-down Republican lawmakers and conservative personalities to rifle-wielding militias and far-right extremists, Wednesday is seen as the day to mount a “final stand” to keep the President in power, despite his clear electoral defeat. As lawmakers loyal to Trump prepare to challenge the election’s certification on Capitol Hill, pro-Trump online groups have been touting the date as a decisive moment for his supporters to show their loyalty. The demonstrations, which began Tuesday, are the culmination of the ongoing “Stop the Steal” protests rallying around the President’s false claims that mass voter fraud cost him the election.

Trump has been encouraging supporters to come to D.C. for weeks, prompting accusations that he is inciting extremist groups to possible violence. On Twitter, Trump has called Jan. 6 a “historic day” that will be “wild!” He has also hinted he may personally appear.

Trump’s supporters’ hopes are also being fueled by at least 140 House Republicans and 12 Senators who say they are planning to vote against counting the electoral votes that would officially certify the election for Biden on Wednesday. “Our presence in Washington D.C. will let Members of Congress know that we stand with Rep. Mo Brooks and his colleagues in the House of Representatives who will bravely object to the certification of the Electoral College,” says the website for one of Wednesday’s rallies organized by “Stop the Steal.”

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