April 1, 2023 | NPR, NBC

Pro-Trump communities react “unenthusiastically” at news of Trump indictment

Unlike the weeks before and after January 6, pro-Trump supporters aren’t jumping at the chance of unrest following news of the former President’s indictment– at least, for now. ISD Senior Research Manager, Jared Holt, features in NPR and NBC News commenting on how the news has been received, mostly unenthusiastically, among pro-Trump communities online. Since Trump first announced that he would be “arrested,” Jared has seen supporters either convince each other not to mobilize out of cynicism toward the government, as well as the online spaces where they convene, or reminding each other that Trump ‘didn’t do enough last time’ (Jan 6).

“Any time somebody suggests anything too crazy, a lot of them just yell at each other and accuse them of, you know, accusing each other of being federal agents, trying to entrap each other. As long as those kinds of dynamics are in play, there’s going to be a pretty big hurdle to any sort of mass organizing on Trump’s behalf,” he told NPR. “From our early reads on this, we can’t, you know, haven’t been able to really pick out a whole lot of solid plans to actually mobilize large crowds around this.  I say that with the caveat that in the weeks to come that can always change.”

Instead, online discussion has seemingly focused on George Soros’s donations to a group that supported the campaign of Manhattan District Attorney, Alvin Bragg, ‘accelerationism’, and in some circles, encouraging the publicizing of juror information.

“Accelerationism is a concept on the far right that’s defined by a cynicism and disbelief in the legitimacy of the democratic process or in functions of government,” Jared told NBC. “Subscribers to it suggest as a solution a series of actions that are often violent, and meant to compromise or hasten what they believe to be unavoidable collapse of that system.”

“Some Trump supporters are seeing a system that they think is rigged against them. Some of them are embracing this concept of saying, ‘We have to break the system instead of trying to convince people of our ideas’,” he said. “It is a disregard and even contempt for the systems of democracy.”