Trump is 'setting the stage for a kind of pro-Trump paramilitary force': analyst
A militia member with a rifle in an open field (Shutterstock)

According to MSNBC political analyst Zeeshan Aleem, Donald Trump's claim that he will pardon the Jan. 6 rioters if he is re-elected in 2024 is nothing less than a recruitment pitch for another Capitol insurrection with true believers thinking they will be absolved of all criminal acts if they help him take control of the government.

Earlier in the week, the former president told far-right Newsmax host Wendy Bell that he has been financially supporting some of the Jan. 6 rioters and then said of them, "It’s a disgrace what they’ve done to them... if I win, I will be looking very, very strongly about pardons, full pardons.”

According to Aleem, those comments not only give hope to those who have been convicted of rioting and damage to property, among other charges but will be seen as a promise to another wave of his defenders who want to see him installed in the Oval Office again.

As the analyst notes: "Trump is sending out a signal — one which his most devoted supporters will surely take note of."

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"Trump is not only continuing to defend the transgressions of Jan. 6, but also intensifying his commitment to take care of its perpetrators should he achieve presidential power again. Implicit in these pledges is another one: that he will look to take care of anyone who helps him next time around," Aleem predicted.

Such encouragement by the former president will likely set in motion the development of a pro-Trump militia with two years of planning in front of them should he run -- and lose -- again.

"It could be argued Trump is effectively setting the stage for a kind of pro-Trump paramilitary force in the future. Of course he will remain as undisciplined as ever if he actually runs for office, and he’s too sloppy and noncommittal to do something like operate a militia. But there are right-wing militant organizations he can expect to play an organizing role, and he’s now implying that legal immunity and possible financial compensation await those who are willing to do whatever it takes to help him secure victory," the analyst wrote before warning, "We don’t need to succumb to alarmism about this, but these signals should be taken seriously. Recent history tells us that his devotees listen."

You can read the whole piece here.