QAnon March 4 Theory About Donald Trump Is Fed by Lawmakers' 'Lies', Democrats Say

Democrats have warned that the continuing spread of misinformation, including by lawmakers, is helping fuel the far-right amid concerns of further attacks on Congress.

a large building: Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump fly a U.S. flag with a symbol from the group QAnon as they gather outside the U.S. Capitol January 06, 2021 in Washington, D.C. Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump fly a U.S. flag with a symbol from the group QAnon as they gather outside the U.S. Capitol January 06, 2021 in Washington, D.C.

Some QAnon supporters believe Donald Trump will return as president on March 4, based on arcane reasoning and huge distortion of facts, and there are fears that there could be a repeat next week of the violence seen at the Capitol on January 6.

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The head of Capitol Police, Yogananda Pittman, made the case for heightened security on the Hill this week, warning that militia groups involved in the riot want to "blow up the Capitol and kill as many members as possible."

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Police have told Newsweek that they are aware of the significance on March 4 for QAnon and are monitoring any potential threats.

California congressman Adam Schiff told Newsweek that law enforcement would be "better prepared for the possibility of any violence," but warned that "viral misinformation" spread by "unscrupulous leaders" was increasing possible risks.

"The same lies and conspiracy theories that gave rise to the violent insurrection on the Capitol have continued to metastasize, and some Americans now absurdly believe that Donald Trump could somehow return to office on March 4," Schiff said.

"I am confident that we will be better prepared for the possibility of any violence on that day, but the sad truth is that the threat of domestic violent extremism will continue to grow so long as misinformation spreads virally on social media and is encouraged by unscrupulous leaders."

Fellow California Rep. Eric Swalwell said that everyone must take steps to tackle misinformation and help ensure there is no repeat of the violence seen at the Capitol.

"This starts with every elected official publicly acknowledging Joe Biden as the duly elected president of the United States," Swalwell said in a statement to Newsweek.

"The fact that sitting Members of Congress continue to push the divisive and patently false narrative that the election was rigged does nothing to unify our nation and protect us from future threats.

"We should expect more from our elected officials-and those who cannot meet this moment and denounce QAnon fully should be prepared for a reckoning at the ballot box," Swalwell added.

There is no real indication what, if anything, QAnon supporters are planning on March 4.

A number of influential QAnon figures have distanced themselves from the theory of Trump's reinstatement, and urging people not to head to D.C. on that day. The change comes after an earlier theory of mass arrests and executions at Biden's inauguration proved wildly false

Rep. Adam Smith, the top Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee, previously warned of the dangers of QAnon possibly returning to the capital to commit further violence on March 4 if Trump is not reinstated.

"Stuff like that circulates all the time, does it mean it's going to happen, probably not, but if you want to help, tell them not to do that, tell them that the election is over. Joe Biden won. It was a free and fair election," Smith said during a February 17 hearing.

This week, acting Capitol Police chief Pittman defended the department after it was criticized for being unprepared for the January 6 attack, despite violence being widely discussed by far-right extremists and militia groups on social media.

Pittman also denied claims that police do not take the potential threat of violence seriously enough.

"Although we knew the likelihood for violence by extremists, no credible threat indicated that tens of thousands would attack the U.S. Capitol, nor did the intelligence received from the FBI or any other law enforcement partner indicate such a threat," Pittman said in her testimony to lawmakers at the the House Appropriations Committee on Thursday.

Thousands of National Guard troops are to remain in D.C. until March 12 in case there are similar scenes to the riots of January 6.

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