(CNN)Online conversation among Trump supporters and QAnon followers on new and emerging social media platforms is creating concern on Capitol Hill that President Donald Trump’s continued perpetuation of the falsehood that the 2020 election was stolen could soon incite further violence, three congressional sources tell CNN.
The social messaging platform Telegram has emerged as a particular source of concern among law enforcement officials, the congressional sources say. Groups on the platform dedicated to QAnon and pro-Trump conspiracy theories have tens of thousands of members — many of whom hang on every word the former President says.
Trump’s comments to right-wing media outlets in recent weeks have played directly into the false belief among some of his supporters that he will be reinstated as president in the coming months.
Federal law enforcement officials say there is an overall concern about rhetoric on the election in general, both online, on Telegram and other sites, and offline.
Officials are careful to stress that much of it falls under First Amendment free speech protections. But officials are worried about how the talk can encourage and inspire people to act. They are continuing to monitor extremists and others who at times have shown intentions of violence.
Major social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter suspended the accounts of influential peddlers of election conspiracy theories after the January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol, including Trump himself.
That resulted in a surge of downloads for alternative social media apps, and many Trump supporters have found a home on Telegram, where there are fewer rules against misinformation and conspiracy theories like QAnon.
Congressional sources tell CNN that Trump’s comments about the highly questioned Republican-led audit in Arizona and his reported comments about returning as president in August are of particular concern.
One clip th
Go To The SourceRead More