News & Politics

MAGA Geniuses Plot Takeover of US Capitol

Photograph via iStock.

TheDonald.win, an online forum for fans of President Trump, is on fire Tuesday with members’ plans to travel to DC for pro-Trump rallies. Since the rallies coincide with Congress’s expected confirmation of Joe Biden’s victory over Trump, a subset of TheDonald.win’s posters have discussed ways they might “occupy” or “storm” the US Capitol to make citizens’ arrests of lawmakers who hold old-fashioned views like honoring state-certified election results.

Eva Malecki, a spokesperson for the US Capitol Police, declined to comment on the MAGA fans’ thought experiments but tells Washingtonian that “While we do not discuss the means, methods, or specific resources used to carry out our protective responsibilities, the United States Capitol Police has comprehensive security plans in place and we continuously monitor and assess new and emerging threats, with the overall goal of keeping those within the Capitol Complex safe and secure.”

Some of TheDonald.win’s commenters nonetheless think they’ve found a way in that the cops may have forgotten: The Capitol complex’s system of pedestrian tunnels, originally built to protect delicate lawmakers from Washington’s weather. In one discussion titled “If we occupy the capitol building, there will be no vote,” for instance, commenters bat around the idea while taking into consideration doors that are “built like castle walls,” barricades, and law enforcement.

Tunnels are a big topic of discussion in other posts, like this one that fantasizes about “Every corrupt member of congress locked in one room and surrounded by real Americans.” (Pessimism, alas, surfaces that members of Congress will instead “vote via Skype from the luxury of their villas with private security guarding their families like the coward commie scum they are.”) Another shares an old-timey map of the tunnels that purports to show the complex from below. Sample comment: “It’s the worst map I’ve ever seen.”

One poster shared the Architect of the Capitol’s web page about the Capitol subway, though someone replied that its URL–aoc.gov–was “triggering me.” Another suggests the perfect music to accompany their madcap scheme: Inner Circle’s “Bad Boys,” also known as the theme to Cops. There’s definitely no better way to indicate that you are on the side of law and order.

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Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute, TBD.com, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.