MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, and hundreds of other people dialed in to the so-called patriot wing of the D.C. jail where January 6 prisoners are being held to sing the Star-Spangled Banner with them.
A video posted Sunday night by the Patriot Freedom Project—which has previously posted purported recordings of the incarcerated defendants singing the national anthem—shows Lindell, Flynn, and approximately 200 other people singing the anthem over speakerphone with alleged Capitol rioters who are currently in pretrial detention.
Lindell fidgeted for much of the less-than-two-minute rendition of the song, and appeared to not be singing for most of it, even though he was holding a microphone.
In addition to Lindell and Flynn, two of the most high-profile boosters of the provably false conspiracy theory that the 2020 election was stolen, Lindell collaborator David Clements was in attendance. Clements is a New Mexico State University business professor who appeared at Lindell’s “Cyber Symposium” in August; he’s been suspended by his college for violating university mask and vaccine mandates,
Capitol riot defendants being held in the jail have taken to singing the Star-Spangled Banner at 9 p.m. every night, as well as reportedly passing around their own newsletter.
More than three dozen men are being held in the wing in total; more than 600 people have been charged in connection with the riot, the overwhelming majority of whom are out on bail. Last week, Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Louie Gohmert—two of the most far-right Republicans in Congress—visited the jail, and Greene later compared conditions there to those in a prisoner of war camp.
Last month, a federal judge in D.C. released one defendant, 35-year-old Buffalo, New York resident Thomas Sibick, to the custody of his parents after his lawyer argued that the jail conditions made for a “toxic environment” and that the Patriot Wing was “almost cult-like.”
Researchers have expressed concern about grouping far-right riot defendants together in prison.
“Having them all together where they can seemingly communicate by newsletter, is likely to foster continued feelings of anti-government mentality among those individuals who are being prosecuted,” Jonathan Lewis, a research fellow at the George Washington University’s Program on Extremism, told VICE News last month.
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