QAnonfollowers have already started to find excuses for why Donald Trump did not replace Joe Biden as US president on 4 March.

If you haven’t been following, conspiracy theorists argued that Trump would return this week due to a baseless claim that the US turned into a corporation, rather than a country, after the passage of the District of Columbia Organic Act in 1871.

Therefore, they believe that any amendment passed after 1871 is illegitimate, including the 20th amendment which moved the inauguration date from 4 March to 20 January.

Of course when nothing happened on Thursday, QAnon followers were left scrambling for an explanation.

Some influencers in the movement had turned away from the 4th March theory early, claiming that the date may have been set up as a “false flag” operation by the US government designed to lure in members.

“No there won’t be a Trump inauguration today, as much as we’re all patiently waiting for that day,” one influencer said, according to former conservative activist Matthew Sheffield.

“Remember that Trump was chosen by the military to do a job. Dates were never revealed, as that would go against a military sting operation.

“It will happen, be patient and hold the line.”

In short: don’t worry, something will definitely happen… just not yet…

As extremism researcher Amarnath Amarasingam notes, regular supporters of QAnon have started to move to the belief that the 4th March date was never correct and true believers knew it was wrong all along…

This is how the conspiracy theory continues to survive despite consistently being shown to be wrong, by moving the goalposts and disavowing failed predictions.

The anonymous “clues” left by Q are cryptic by design and can support a number of different interpretations so there is always an opportunity to explain away incorrect theories.

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