Donald Trump’s judicial problems are increasing. Today he will make history again as the first former president of the United States charged with federal crimes, the most serious, although not the only ones that he will have to face.
Although the prosecution plans to announce it today, within 20 minutes of communicating it to Trump’s lawyers last night, all the US media knew about it. And as if that were not enough, Trump himself stood in front of a vintage painting at his residence in Bedminster, New Jersey, where he spends his vacation playing golf, to record his tirade.
“This is called electoral interference,” he accused in the four-minute video that he posted on Truth Social. “They are trying to sink my reputation to win the elections.” It was, according to him, “a BLACK DAY for the US”, the “rapidly declining” country that intends to “Make It Great Again”, according to the slogan of his movement (MAGA, for its acronym in English).
Trump has been lucky. According to his own announcement, he will be indicted Tuesday at 3 p.m. local time in Miami, where the circus that took place in New York will presumably turn in his favor when last March prosecutor Alvin Bragg charged him with 34 charges related to payments to the porn actress Stormy Daniels.
Florida has always been Trump’s backyard, who turned his beachfront mansion into a second White House, where he even registered to avoid paying personal taxes. In the summer season the tropical climate of the state is a sauna that had traded for his golf course in New Jersey, but on Tuesday he will have to fly to Miami to face these accusations, his lawyers reported yesterday. There the hordes of followers who in New York were a minority will await him.
Special prosecutor Jack Smith, whom he tore apart in a mass email, could have chosen to try him in Washington DC, where it would have been easier for him to find a critical jury to evaluate the seven crimes of which he is accused, always according to his lawyers. However, Smith, despite the accusations of corruption that Trump has launched against him and the Biden government, has preferred to follow the correct path of charging him where the crimes were committed.
Trump will be charged with obstruction of justice and conspiracy to “intentionally” withhold national defense secrets related to classified documents the FBI seized from his mansion in a raid last August. “There had to be dozens of better ways that this thing could have been handled,” former Vice President Mike Pence criticized just Wednesday, when he announced that he will compete with his former boss for the Republican Party nomination. The prosecution will argue that he tried by all means to recover the documents in a friendly way, but the security cameras of Mar-a-Lago will show that the same day he received a court order to deliver them, he instructed his employees to move the 15 boxes that the FBI agents ended up confiscating, in which there were a hundred documents classified as “top secret”. There is also, according to CNN, a recording in which Trump boasts of knowingly withholding Pentagon documents about a potential attack on Iran.
The charges carry up to ten years in prison, although it would be doubtful whether he would receive the maximum sentence. Even if he is found guilty, none of that will stop him from running for office and even ruling from jail if necessary. There is a paradox that in the US prisoners lose their right to vote, but not to run for president.
To take a historic step like this that, according to the former vice president, “will terribly divide the country,” it is assumed that Smith has found irrefutable proof. Trump still has to face the decision of a grand jury in Atlanta (Georgia) to indict him for trying to alter the result of the elections and another in Washington DC that is studying his responsibility in the insurrection of January 6. With all these pending legal processes, his participation in the electoral campaign will be difficult, but the former president knows how to take advantage of scandals better than anyone. In the first 24 hours after the announcement of his indictment in New York, he raised more than four million dollars. Last night I had already launched a new email campaign to make the new charges profitable. “I’m innocent!” he cried. “This is a witch hunt”