The release of extensive Capitol security footage from January 6, 2021, by House Speaker Mike Johnson has sparked a renewed attempt by Republican legislators and far-right activists to distort the facts surrounding the events of that day and absolve the pro-Trump rioters involved.

Johnson’s recent decision to release the footage, a demand that has been made by the far right for quite some time, was motivated by his attempt to ease the unrest among Republican lawmakers who were unhappy with his collaboration with Democrats to pass a government funding bill.

Ironically, some of these very individuals who were furious about his previous decision are now twisting the January 6 video to spread a variety of conspiracy theories regarding the most significant assault on the Capitol in U.S. history.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia) claimed on X that the surveillance footage illustrated a participant in the riot visibly clutching a badge from law enforcement, implying that the man was an undercover police officer masquerading as a supporter of former President Donald Trump, insinuating that the assault was orchestrated to smear the ex-president.

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Upon further examination, it becomes evident that the object held by the man in the screenshot Greene shared was actually a vape pen. Moreover, the individual shown in the image, Kevin Lyons, was not a police officer but rather a heating and cooling technician. Subsequently, Lyons was convicted during a public trial for various federal offenses and received a prison sentence of four years.

Later on, Greene revised her post and eliminated the untrue statement, although it had already been widely disseminated among Trump followers.

Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) also shared the same video clip and unfounded accusation that the man in the picture had displayed a badge. He said he was looking forward to interrogating Christopher  Wray, the director of the FBI, regarding the issue.

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