Donald Trump has repeatedly praised the mob that stormed the halls of Congress on January 6, 2021, an attack fuelled by the former president’s baseless narrative that the 2020 election was stolen from him.
He has vowed to issue mass pardons for Capitol riot defendants, and now he has joined them on a song released on streaming platforms.
A group of defendants naming themselves the J6 Prison Choir released a track titled “Justice for All” on 3 March that features their rendition of the national anthem while the former president recites the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mr Trump recorded his portion at Mar-a-Lago, while the J6 Prison Choir recorded vocals by prison phone, according to Forbes, which first reported on the track.
The song, clocking in at two minutes and 20 seconds, made its debut on far-right activist and former Trump aide Steve Bannon’s War Room podcast.
Mr Trump will once again deliver headlining remarks at the Conservative Political Action Conference, a closely watched four-day stage for right-wing activists and Republican officials as GOP campaigns advance a 2024 agenda and mull potential candidates.
One panel at CPAC titled “True Stories of January 6: The Prosecuted Speak” provided a platform to a group of people who joined the Capitol riots.
Panelists reportedly included former West Virginia lawmaker Derrick Evans, who resigned from office after his arrest and apologised for his actions in court before he was sentenced to 90 days in prison on a felony charge of civil disorder.
The panel also included Simone Gold, a founder of America’s Frontline Doctors, an anti-Covid-19 vaccine organisation that is among CPAC’s chief sponsors. Gold pleaded guilty to knowingly and unlawfully “entering and remaining in a restricted building or grounds” and was sentenced to 60 days in prison and a $9,500 fine for entering the Capitol on January 6, which she said she regretted.
Mr Trump’s recording with the J6 Prison Choir – which remains available on Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube, as of 3 March – is reportedly being used to raise money for January 6 defendants through a LLC run by conservative activist Ed Henry.
“I am financially supporting people that are incredible and they were in my office actually two days ago, so they’re very much in my mind,” Mr Trump told radio host Wendy Bell last year. “It’s a disgrace what they’ve done to them. What they’ve done to these people is disgraceful.”