Trump Wants to Create 'Spectacle,' Appear in Handcuffs if He's Arrested: Multiple Sources

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

If you’re not already sick of the barrage of “breaking” Trump non-news news, continue reading…

So, here’s the deal: Before you skewer the messenger or trash the sources, if you’re so inclined, ask yourself: Is this report quintessential Donald Trump, or what? Then, if you find it necessary, skewer away; I’m more than used to it, it bothers me not, and I actually find it amusing. Anyway, let’s get on with the show.


Sources close to Trump say if the former president is finally arrested, arraigned, and mug-shotted, he wants to turn the whole thing into epic Trumpian melodrama. (My description.) Trump reportedly told several close advisors about his plan, as reported by The Guardian, New York Post, and several other major outlets.

While Trump’s motivations are likely varied, he reportedly wants to be handcuffed behind his back for a perp walk because he wants to demonstrate defiance in the face of what he sees as an unfair prosecution, with the belief that it further galvanize his base for his 2024 presidential campaign. But above all, sources said, he’s afraid that if his court appearance is by video link, or if he skulks into the courthouse, it would make him look “weak” or “like a loser.”

(Again, as we’ve seen for seven years, this kinda stuff is the very essence of Trump and Trumpism.)

Here’s more, via The Guardian:

The recent discussions that Trump has had about his surrender with close advisers at Mar-a-Lago and elsewhere opens a window on to the former president’s unique fears and anxieties as the grand jury, which next convenes on Wednesday, appears on course to return an indictment.

Trump’s legal team in the hush money case has recoiled at the idea of him going in person and recommended that Trump quietly turn himself in and schedule a remote appearance, even citing guidance from his Secret Service detail about potential security concerns.

It remains uncertain when the Manhattan grand jury might return an indictment in the hush money case and make him the first US president, sitting or former, to face criminal charges.


As we reported earlier on Wednesday, the day after predicted he’d be arrested, a scheduled grand jury meeting on Wednesday was abruptly canceled for uncertain reasons. Why? I don’t know, but I do know that the speculation began immediately.

Anyway, it’s unclear how serious Trump is about being handcuffed and perp-walked, for all the world (the Trump faithful) to see. It’s also possible that Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg would scuttle any plans Trump might have to make the “spectacle” he allegedly covets.

Incidentally, via the Guardian — again, very Trumpian — Trump reportedly told various allies over the weekend that he didn’t care if someone shot him, reasoning that he’d then become “a martyr,” later adding that if he did get shot, he’d probably win the presidency.

One assumes, of course, that Trump expects he’d survive such an attack.

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