The remaining hard-core QAnon followers who are still holding out hope that former President Donald Trump will somehow be reinstated as president were dealt another disappointment on Friday, the latest date believers had pegged for an unconstitutional return to power after earlier predictions also went by with a whimper.
For months, August 13 had been pushed as the date for Trump’s return to power, though it doesn’t seem there was much of a basis for why this specific date was predicted.
Some Trump followers who falsely claim widespread fraud robbed him of a win in the 2020 presidential election had hoped the GOP-pushed Arizona election audit would uncover proof of fraud, but the audit is running months behind schedule and cannot alter the long-certified election results.
According to Maggie Haberman of the New York Times, Trump himself was saying earlier this year that he believed he’d be reinstated to office by August, though his daughter-in-law and campaign surrogate Lara Trump said Trump’s team didn’t actually believe he’d return to the White House this year.
MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, a noted conspiracy theorist regarding the 2020 election results, has also floated August 13 as the reinstatement date for Trump and several GOP senators who lost in 2020, while far-right attorney Sidney Powell has also claimed Trump “can simply be reinstated,” even though there’s no legal authority for that to happen.
QAnon conspiracy theorists had put earlier hopes on March 4 as the date when Trump would be sworn in as president—the “true Inauguration Day,” since March 4 is when presidents were sworn in before the 20th amendment passed in 1933, which moved Inauguration Day up to January 20. But there was an even stranger theory behind that date, with QAnon followers claiming that the U.S. government had secretly turned into a corporation in 1871, meaning that all presidents that have served since Ulysses S. Grant have actually been illegitimate. The idea that Trump would be sworn in as the 19th president on March 4 was enough to entice some QAnon followers to travel to Washington to attend the nonexistent ceremony, with Trump’s D.C. hotel mysteriously choosing to jack up room rates around that date. But while some still believe Trump will return as president, the winds were largely taken out of the sails of the QAnon movement when Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th president on January 20, leaving QAnon followers who truly thought Biden wouldn’t be allowed to become president dumbfounded. Many QAnon followers believed Trump would arrive at Biden’s inauguration only to reclaim power and execute Democrats, who QAnon says are part of a Satanic child sex trafficking cult that secretly controls the U.S. through the dark machinations of the “deep state.”
U.S. Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Tex.) dismissed a QAnon believer who heckled him during a campaign fundraiser on Wednesday. The heckler said Arizona’s election audit would allow Trump to capture its electoral votes, to which Crenshaw replied: “You’re kidding yourself,” noting that the outcome of the audit can’t actually flip the Arizona results. And even if it could, Arizona on its own wouldn’t be nearly enough for Trump to claim he actually won the election. “Don’t kid yourself into believing that’s why we lost. It’s not,” Crenshaw said.
18. That’s how many states have enacted laws this year making it tougher to vote, according to the Brennan Center for Justice, in an apparent response to Trump’s assertion that widespread voter fraud had robbed him of a second term.
What We Don’t Know
If QAnon followers plan to place their hopes on yet another day they believe Trump will return as president, it’s not clear what that next date will be.