Although former President Donald Trump’s earlier prediction that he would be arrested on Tuesday did not come to pass, reports indicate that Alvin Bragg, the district attorney for Manhattan, New York, is finalizing an effort to indict Trump in connection with an alleged hush money payment he made to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
Trump continues to deny claims that he had a sexual relationship with Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, but his former, Michael Cohen, has reportedly provided testimony against him in the case.
After the former president called on supporters to “protest” his impending arrest, a number of prominent Republicans sounded off on Bragg’s apparent push to charge him with a crime.
A Trump indictment would be a disgusting abuse of power. The DA should be put in jail.
— Rand Paul (@RandPaul) March 21, 2023
Even some GOP figures who have a reputation as Trump critics are similarly dismayed by the district attorney’s pursuit.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, for example, said that it “just feels like a politically charged prosecution here.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is widely expected to challenge Trump in the 2024 GOP presidential primary, denounced the situation as “some type of manufactured circus by some Soros D.A.”
Billionaire George Soros has funded the campaigns of leftist prosecutors nationwide as part of a concerted effort to redefine criminal justice. Many on the right have decried the trend based on the belief that policies like eliminating cash bail and reducing mandatory sentences have contributed to an ongoing crime wave in many parts of the country.
Trump himself accused Bragg of “breaking the law,” writing on Truth Social this week that the district attorney had used “the fake and fully discredited testimony … of a convicted liar, felon and jailbird Michael Cohen to incredibly persecute, prosecute and indict a former president, and now leading (by far!) presidential candidate, for a crime that doesn’t exist.”
Echoing the assessment of others who believe the ordeal is manufactured to damage his chances of securing a second term in the White House, Trump concluded: “Alvin Bragg should be held accountable for the crime of interference in a presidential election.”
House Republicans called on Bragg to testify before Congress regarding the possible indictment, but a spokesperson responded with a statement declaring that his office “will not be intimidated by attempts to undermine the justice process, nor will we let baseless accusations deter us from fairly applying the law.”