independent– Organisers of the rally that occurred outside of the White House on 6 January minutes before the Capitol was attacked by Trump supporters reportedly used “burner” phones to communicate with the president’s inner circle, including Eric Trump.
Amy Kremer, a co-founder of “Women for America First” who played a key role in drawing the president’s supporters to Washington to hear him speak outside the White House, allegedly used the so-called “burner” phones to communicate with the president’s son ahead of the rally, multiple sources told Rolling Stone.
At that rally, the president told the thousands of attendees to “fight” for his false claims about widespread election fraud.
The sources told the magazine that Ms Kremer went as far as instructing her fellow organisers to purchase the prepaid phones with cash. The sources said she described the need to purchase the phones in a less-traceable manner as “of the utmost importance”.
Other members of the former president’s inner circle and campaign were supposedly in contact with Ms Kremer as well via the phones, including Eric Trump’s wife Lara Trump and Mark Meadows, the former White House chief of staff
“That was when the planning for the event on the Ellipse was happening, she needed burner phones in order to communicate with high-level people is how she put it,” one source told Rolling Stone.
The Independent has reached out to Eric Trump for comment on Rolling Stone’s reporting and with other questions regarding the extent of his involvement in rally organising efforts ahead of 6 January.
The rally, as well as a separate one outside the US Capitol, were the sources of the crowds that converged on the US Capitol; many began battling with law enforcement and forced their way into the building, disrupting Congress for several hours while offices of the House and Senate floor were vandalised.
Questions have lingered since the attack whether allies of the president in his campaign, his broader circle of aides and advisers, as well as on Capitol Hill itself knew that violence was likely or even possibly planned ahead of time in the days leading up to the rally. A remark from Steve Bannon, former White House chief strategist, on his podcast predicting that “all Hell will break loose” just a day before the riot occurred, has only fueled that speculation.
The select House committed to investigating the 6 January attack has now subpoenaed dozens of individuals and groups as its probe of the attack and the pro-Trump rallies in Washington that day continues. Mr Bannon was charged with contempt of Congress earlier this month for attempting to defy the committee’s subpoenas. Ms Kremer and other members of her organisation are among the targets.
The former president and his allies have demonised the committee’s investigation as an effort to smear millions of Trump supporters even as Mr Trump continues to make false claims about his 2020 election defeat and publicly considers another White House bid.