'Let them go!' Trump demands all J6 'patriots' be released immediately
Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at the Prescott Valley Event Center. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

In a video rant posted to his Truth Social platform on Friday, former President Donald Trump demanded the immediate release of January 6 defendants who ransacked the Capitol and attacked police officers, and doubling down on his baseless conspiracy theories that the 2020 presidential election was "stolen."

He cited the release of Capitol footage given to Fox News' Tucker Carlson by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), even though that footage doesn't actually exonerate the rioters.

"Patriotic Americans are being prosecuted for peacefully protesting a stolen election," said Trump. "Let them go! They were convicted, or are awaiting trial, based on a giant lie, a radical left con job. Thank you to Tucker Carlson and Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy for what you both have done. New video footage is irrefutable. Absolutely irrefutable. Thank you very much."

"We have to fight for our country, and we have to fight like we've never fought before," Trump continued. "Our country is great, but it's in tremendous trouble. We're a nation in decline. We have to stop being called a nation in decline. They're laughing at us, all over the world. We're not going to let that happen any longer."

Trump did not clarify what he meant by America being "in decline."

Over 1,000 people have so far been charged, convicted, or taken deals in the January 6 prosecutions, with the charges ranging from misdemeanor trespass and disorderly conduct to assaulting police officers, and in the case of far-right groups that orchestrated pre-planned attacks, seditious conspiracy.