It’s a little like those old horror movies where the panicked babysitter gets a phone call from the police warning to get out because the threatening calls are coming from inside the house!
Except the calls from the Oaf Keepers were going inside the Executive Branch…
WASHINGTON — The founder of the Oath Keepers indicated in the months before the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol that he was in contact with a member of the Secret Service, a former member of the far-right organization testified during a seditious conspiracy trialThursday…
…Rhodes got on the phone with the unknown person to ask about “parameters” the Oath Keepers could operate under during the rally, Zimmerman said. He said Oath Keepers attended the rally to escort attendees from the rally location to their vehicles.
Anyway, there could be an innocent explanation:
In response to a request for comment, a Secret Service spokesperson said: “We are aware that individuals from the Oath Keepers have contacted us in the past to make inquiries.
“As part of our protective mission, we will establish an overall security plan, including traffic and crowd management protocols at venues where a protectee is scheduled to visit,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “As part of this effort, it is not uncommon for various organizations to contact us concerning security restrictions and activities that are permissible in proximity to our protected sites.”
Or, it could be something less innocent:
Rhodes frequently cited the Insurrection Act, according to evidence presented by prosecutors, and said in a call recorded in November 2020 that a “quick reaction force” with weapons set up outside Washington for the November rally would go into Washington only if Trump invoked the act to call militias to his aid, under an 1807 law that is supposed to help a president suppress a civil disorder, insurrection or rebellion. Zimmerman said that he didn’t think that Rhodes was necessarily in touch with Trump but that he did think Rhodes had a Secret Service connection and that that is how the Oath Keepers might find out that Trump had invoked the Insurrection Act.
Speculating wildly: I don’t know why my first thought was Tony Ornato, but it was.
Anyway, it seems pretty clear that there was some line of communication between the Oaf Keepers and the Secret Service (at some level, for some reason) and that itself seems… troubling.