Pro-Trump Rally-Goers Blame Mysterious Bogeymen for Latest Event Flop

Zachary Petrizzo/The Daily Beast

WASHINGTON, DC—Right-wing activists assembled on Capitol grounds Friday afternoon for yet another pro-Trump rally after a similar event proved to be an epic failure less than two weeks ago—but again found themselves struggling to explain pathetically low turnout.

Fervent supporters of Jan. 6 defendants, a MAGA-loving fashion designer, and a rough-and-tumble gentleman dressed in early colonial garb were just a few of the characters back outside the Capitol, equally upset at President Joe Biden and over Capitol rioters remaining behind bars.

Despite their attempts to draw in the MAGA faithful by playing Donald Trump speeches ahead of their first speaker, the “Stop the Tyrants & Unite for Freedom” gathering flopped. Even with frequent Steve Bannon podcast guest Matt Braynard in attendance, a mother of 27 individuals–including two hired private security guards–showed up.

Braynard, a leading Jan. 6 advocate and director of the right-wing organization “Look Ahead America,” took to the miniature stage and almost immediately cried crowd over five liberal activists who had shown up to protest the event.

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Zachary Petrizzo/The Daily Beast

But these weren’t any activists. Instead, these activists, who event organizer John Paul Moran referred to as “paid agitators” and members of Antifa, brought particularly upsetting and bothersome trinkets to derail the pro-Trump rally: whistles.

“I want you to recognize something,” Braynard said. “They are trying to interrupt. That’s why they’re blowing the whistle. To make it hard to hear us!”

Further, the irony of defending Capitol police officers was apparently lost on him.

“You have some purple-haired freak, three inches from your face, blowing a whistle, causing you [police officers] hearing damage,” Braynard continued, attempting to be a white knight on behalf of the same Capitol police force that Jan. 6 defendants allegedly assaulted.

Elsewhere at the event, theories flowed about why the event didn’t pan out and draw in the masses.

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Zachary Petrizzo/The Daily Beast

Right-wing speaker and lawyer Deborah Weiss blamed the organizers for scheduling the event on a sunny Friday afternoon.

“First of all, it’s a weekday during the day, [and] a lot of people work,” she told The Daily Beast. “Second of all, it’s very, very hard for conservative groups to get their message out right before the election,” she said before claiming email invitations for the event were censored by suspicious left-wing forces.

She then fine-tuned that theory to claim email invites wound up in spam folders—directed there somehow by unspecified sinister figures.

“They didn’t go into my inbox. They disappeared entirely,” she said. “Hard to get the message out!”

Similarly, self-proclaimed “Capitan” Matthew Woods, dressed in colonial attire (except for his run-of-the-mill “khakis”), echoed the claim of would-be right-wing attendees being “fear[ful]” of being back in Washington, DC Woods also expressed frustration over the lack of notice to potential event attendees.

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Zachary Petrizzo/The Daily Beast

MAGA fashion designer Andre Soriano spoke too, flanked by a female model wearing a Trump-inspired dark red dress reading, “Keep America Great.” Wearing a black top hat, along with a long pea-coat (a look he called “Abraham Lincoln-ish”), Soriano railed against Biden while taking issue with stimulus checks. By the end of his short speech, he was in tears. Literally. He fell into the hands of a nearby organizer’s arms after walking off stage.

As for the lackluster crowd, he said, “it doesn’t matter the size of a crowd.”

Joseph McBride, a prominent Jan. 6 attorney, made a cameo at the event. “You have members of Antifa over there,” he declared to The Daily Beast before being called up on stage by failed Virginia Republican Senate candidate Ivan Raiklin to address the crowd.

One of the only Washington, DC residents, speaker and “patriot activist” Suzanne Monk, claimed the rioting on Jan. 6 was to blame for subsequent events in DC failing miserably.

“Or even the government itself,” she said. “Obviously, people are a little nervous that this could happen again.”

Nevertheless, John Paul Moran, founder of the organizing group “GOUSA,” said, “We put the word out, literally, about a week ago. We would have liked to have more people, but I would consider it a success.”

Moran concluded by asking attendees to join him at Harry’s Bar, a far-right Proud Boy hotspot in the city, for happy hour.

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