Donald Trump’s warning of his impending indictment on Tuesday never came to fruition, causing conflicting reports among his base following public shows of support for the legally embattled former president.
On Saturday, Trump took to social media and wrote an all-caps post advocating for protests in his defense as Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is reportedly getting closer to issuing an indictment pertaining to an alleged $130,000 hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels.
Trump remains under investigation in other criminal matters including the mishandling of classified documents and the attempted overturning of Georgia’s electoral results in the 2020 election. The Daniels-related case has been called politically motivated by Trump, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and other prominent Republicans in Congress.
Video circulating online Monday appeared to show various individuals in New York City, including in front of Trump Tower, holding signs and expressing support for Trump. Some of the individuals were wearing face masks.
Many self-professed Trump supporters said on sites including Twitter that the face masks indicate that the “protests” are staged by leftists to humiliate Trump.
Several users said, “Trump supporters don’t wear masks.” Others referred to “paid leftist actors and agitators,” some of whom were purportedly paid by the media.
One user posted a picture allegedly from Florida of supposed Trump supporters donned in masks.
A video posted by photojournalist Rebecca Brannon shows an argument ensuing between a masked man and a shaman, with the masked man accusing the shaman of being a “plant” for Biden.
He accused the shaman of being “wired up,” prompting the supposed Trump-supporting shaman to strip topless to indicate he wasn’t wearing a wire.
After two New York Police Department vehicles were set ablaze on Monday in anticipation of unrest due to the indictment Trump cautioned, crowds have overall been minimal.
A “peaceful protest” organized Monday evening by the New York Young Republican Club was mocked for its turnout. Ben Collins, senior reporter for NBC News, tweeted that there were “more reporters here than Trump supporters.”
Trump supporter Philippe Lejeune, 38, traveled from New Jersey and told Politico that he wished Trump received more support in New York City.
“I am not worried about Trump supporters engaging in any violent activities,” Lejeune said. “I am completely against violence. I am worried about ANTIFA showing up or anyone in masks and you aren’t sure who they work for.”
Following Trump’s initial calls for protests, Republican supporters of his quickly took to social media to encourage others to avoid involvement in the streets—relating the potential implications to what happened to January 6 rioters.
Some, like conservative commentator Jesse Kelly, completely rebuked Trump.
“FYI: The last time Trump’s biggest fans protested on his behalf, he left them all to rot in jail without so much as a penny from him in legal fees. Not a penny,” Kelly tweeted Saturday. “Shame on him for this. Do NOT go to a blue area and protest for this man. Ignore this.”
Others, in an effort to avoid physical confrontation but still support Trump, galvanized online to encourage a national bank run instead. A bank run consists of a flurry of simultaneous bank withdrawals aimed at causing financial mayhem.
Republican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a staunch Trump supporter, has pointed fingers at fellow Republicans for not expressing enough support for the former president. She said it’s reminiscent of 2017 “when the Russia hoax started.”
The post Photos of Trump Supporters at Protest Spark Conspiracy Theory appeared first on Newsweek.