Donald Trump claimed during his Conservative Political Action Conference address on Saturday that the January 6 riots in the US Capitol and the alleged 2020 plan by the right-wing militia to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer are both “fake” — government conspiracies.
“The sting they did to Gretchen Whitmer was fake, as were the ones that initiated Jan. 6,” Trump said. “It was a fake deal, fake. It was a fake deal.”
“I think Gretchen Whitmer was in less danger than the people sitting in this room right now,” Trump added.
Michigan prosecutors say conspirators attempted to kidnap the governor of Michigan and discussed stranding her on a boat or killing her.
The four alleged conspirators temporarily escaped prosecution in April when two were acquitted and a mistrial was handed down for the remaining defendants.
In June, a federal judge ordered a new test for two of the alleged conspirators.
The government’s case against the alleged conspirators was based in part on the testimony of a federal informant and prominent conservatives and defense attorneys for the alleged militiamen who claimed they were weekend fighters who had been coaxed by the government into a plot they never took seriously. were left.
As of January 6, the former president and numerous other prominent Republican media and political figures have claimed that an Arizona man named Ray Epps was a government informant who encouraged rioters to storm the Capitol.
Ryan Samsel, a Pennsylvania barber who was filmed having a whispered conversation with Mr. Epps on Jan. 6, told the FBI that Mr. Epps had, in fact, encouraged him not to attack the police.
“He came up to me and said, ‘Dude’ — his whole words were, ‘Relax, the police are doing their job,'” Samsel said, according to a recording obtained by The New York Times.
Mr. Epps has denied being a federal informant and cooperated with the Jan. 6 commission.