As RedState reported, Donald Trump put a statement on Saturday morning confirming that his indictment and arrest are imminent. According to the former president, he’ll be taken into custody on Tuesday after the Manhattan District Attorney’s office charges him over a hush money payment made to Stormy Daniels prior to the 2016 election.
The contention is that Trump broke the law by ordering Michael Cohen to make the payment, which was ultimately classified as a legal expense. New York prosecutors assert that election laws were broken because it was actually a campaign expense meant to affect the election. As a legal matter, it’s incredibly weak, and it relies on a never-before-tried legal theory to upgrade the charge to a felony. That would bypass the statute of limitations and put jail time in play for the former president.
Now, Trump is speaking out further, and I believe his latest Truth Social post says everything about his legal situation.
After posting about his expected arrest on Tuesday with a call to “protest,” Trump chimes in again:
“THEY’RE KILLING OUR NATION AS WE SIT BACK & WATCH…PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST!!!” pic.twitter.com/xJulLyS61K
— Spencer Brown (@itsSpencerBrown) March 18, 2023
In the aftermath of the initial announcement, I interacted with several people who brushed the coming indictment off as another silly “the walls are closing in” moment. I think that’s naive. Trump’s all-caps post is not being made from a position of confidence about what is transpiring, and that should be obvious to anyone reading it. He’s clearly scared, and he’s wanting people to take to the streets and take action to stop what’s coming.
To be clear, I don’t blame him a bit for being fearful. I know I would be if I were in his shoes. He’s facing a deep-blue District Attorney’s office that has spent two years ginning up a legal theory to go after him with, on a charge that almost no one else would be hit with. It’s unlikely they’d be following through with an arrest at this point, if they didn’t at least believe they had the goods.
What does that mean in practice? The “goods,” in this case, don’t have to mean a sound prosecution. It just has to be a prosecution that can convince a far-left jury in Manhattan to vote guilty. That is the biggest threat to Trump right now. He can have the best defense in the world, but it probably won’t matter given how hated he is in the jurisdiction that is targeting him.
A lot of smart people (far smarter than me) can make a lot of very smart arguments against this prosecution. But if the deck is stacked before the game even starts, it will all be for naught.
Wherever this ends up taking the country, one lesson should be clear: If you are high-profile enough to be a threat to the Democratic Party, do not stay in left-wing jurisdictions. This kind of lawfare isn’t going to stop. The left will do anything for power, up to and including bastardizing the legal system for political gain. Republicans need to balkanize, protect themselves, and be willing to use the same tactics being used against them going forward. Things are about to get real.
Of course, there is still the possibility that this is a huge head-fake and that Trump’s prior confirmation of an arrest isn’t based on anything definitive. If that turns out to be the case, then everyone involved has some explaining to do.