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On Jan. 6 questions, Alex Jones is the latest to plead the Fifth

When it comes to the Jan. 6 probe, at least four people in Donald Trump's orbit have asserted their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

Donald Trump has been unsubtle in deriding those who asserted their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. "The mob takes the Fifth Amendment," the then-candidate said in 2016. "If you're innocent, why are you taking the Fifth Amendment?"

The question has taken on new significance of late.

We learned last week, for example, that when Eric Trump faced questions about the Trump Organization's business practices, he invoked the Fifth Amendment in response to more than 500 questions. When Alex Jones spoke to the committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack, he didn't plead the Fifth quite as often, though by his own admission, the total nearly reached triple digits. Politico reported this morning:

Pro-Trump broadcaster and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones told listeners that he asserted his Fifth Amendment rights nearly 100 times during an interview Monday with the Jan. 6 select committee.... Jones attributed his decision to plead the Fifth to advice from his attorneys, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

As part of his broadcast, Jones told his audience about what he described as his "unofficial testimony." Given the professional conspiracy theorist's track record, it's difficult to know what to believe, though it was of interest that Jones said investigators had a lot of detailed information about him.

The Politico report added that they displayed images of text messages he had with GOP fundraiser Caroline Wren — whom he described as a liaison with the White House for logistics related to Donald Trump's rally — and Cindy Chafian, who organized a pro-Trump rally on Jan. 5.

As for the larger pattern, let's take stock:

Jeffrey Clark, a former Justice Department official who tried to help Donald Trump overturn the 2020 election by sketching out a map for Republican legislators, told the Jan. 6 committee a couple of months ago that he'd "claim Fifth Amendment protection" against self-incrimination.

John Eastman, who allegedly played a direct role in trying to pressure states not to send Democratic electors, even after the Democratic ticket won those states, also reportedly pleaded the Fifth — by some accounts, nearly 150 times.

Roger Stone, a longtime Trump adviser and GOP operative, said two weeks later that he also pleaded the Fifth.

And now, according to Alex Jones, he's done the same thing.

In other words, when it comes to the investigation into the attack on the Capitol, at least four people in Trump's orbit have refused to answer questions about the riot for fear that their answers may be used against them in possible criminal proceedings.

Raise your hand if you expect that number to grow.