QAnon Shaman’s lawyer blames Trump’s ‘propaganda’ for brainwashing his client to storm the Capitol

Jacob Anthony Angeli Chansley, known as the QAnon Shaman, is seen at the Capital riots
Jacob Anthony Angeli Chansley, known as the QAnon Shaman, is seen at the Capital riots
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On the evening of Donald Trump's Senate trial, CNN host Chris Cuomo hosted the lawyer for the so-called QAnon Shaman, with the attorney aggressively attacking the former president for his “propaganda” efforts in spurring his client to riot at the Capitol.

Cuomo began by reading a statement from the "Shaman" – whose real name is Jacob Chansley – where he expressed his "disappointment" with Trump.

Chansley is in a Washington, DC, jail and awaiting trial over the US Capitol riot, having been arrested and charged with civil disorder, obstruction, and disorderly conduct three days after the attempted coup.

When hundreds of rioters rampaged through the building, Chansley was a prominent figure in many of the news reports, dressed in a fur hat and horns with a painted face, and wielding a spear to which an American flag was tied into the air.

However, the Arizona-based actor and voiceover artist now wants to testify at the Senate impeachment trial as he feels betrayed by Trump, and that he is a victim of a "propaganda machine."

Following the statement, attorney Albert Watkins intervened to lambast Trump.

He said: “One of the things that you missed out and others have missed out on is the propaganda. Trump’s tweets, his social media exploitation, what he said day in, day out, that we all permitted, included untruths, misrepresentations, out and out lies. Not every now and then, every day. Not once a day, multiple times daily.”

“For people like Jake,” Watkins added, “for millions of Americans, they truly did hang on every word of their president, our president, the person that we permitted day in, day out, to speak to us in ways and in fashions that simply weren’t true.”

Cuomo then pressed the attorney on whether Chansley’s beliefs had shifted, in recognition of Trump's "big lie" about widespread fraud.

“So this is a process,” Watkins explained. “The answer is yes. The process, though, is not something that Jake is going through alone. The process of unwinding from years of Trump, years of lies…”

Cuomo was not convinced however, and interjected: “You make it sound like he’s being deprogrammed from a cult…”

“Well, I’ve likened the entire thing to 1978 and Jim Jones down in Guyana,” Watkins replied. “This is very real for these people. These are our brothers and sisters and our families. They’re millions of Americans. The unwinding process is not going to be completed at the end of this week, whenever this impeachment trial is concluded.”

“It’s a process that’s going to require patience and compassion,” Watkins continued. “People who are introspective like my client and smart like my client and alone and able to exploit that time alone, he’s moved through it more quickly than most of my white-collar crime defendant clients.”

Cuomo retorted: “That says something, especially for a guy wearing horns on his head.”

Previously, in reference to Chansley, Watkins told The Daily Beast: "He has come to grasp that fact that the former president really didn't love him and that all the bulls--- about Trump's army and all the social-media-driven conspiracy theories led to a lot of the vulnerability."

Trump staying in power was a key part of QAnon ideology, and many followers thought January 6 would be the date of "The Storm," in which Trump would cleanse Washington of its elites.

Allegedly Trump's decision not to accept a request for a presidential pardon was the turning point at which Chansley realised he had been duped by the former president.

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