Oath Keepers Founder Denies Ordering Capitol Breach

    Photo: cnn

    The Facts

    • Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes on Monday testified in his seditious conspiracy trial — a charge that holds a 20-year maximum prison sentence. He claimed that he never ordered members to enter the US Capitol during the Jan. 6 riots, saying it was “stupid" for those who did so.

    • Rhodes and four other Oath Keepers members — Thomas Caldwell, Kenneth Harrelson, Kelly Meggs, and Jessica Watkins — face charges of organizing an effort to violently prevent the certification of the 2020 election and stockpiling weapons at a nearby hotel.

    The Spin

    Pro-Trump narrative

    It would’ve made no sense for Rhodes to order the Oath Keepers to enter the Capitol. After all, he had warned them to avoid the type of attention that would get them persecuted by their political enemies. They were in DC to simply protect a few very important persons, but a couple of rogue members went into the Capitol of their own volition.

    Democratic narrative

    Considering prosecutors have been able to use his texts against him, it's absurd that Rhodes is trying to avoid responsibility for what the Oath Keepers did on Jan. 6. In those messages he referred to bringing rifles if Trump wouldn’t call on the military, targeting high-profile officials, and authorizing a "quick reaction force" that was positioned at a nearby hotel.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that 16 or more people will be charged by the US DOJ with seditious conspiracy in connection with the Jan 6th Capital riots, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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