Manchin: Trump indictment ‘a very sad time for America’
Sen. Joe Manchin, D, W.Va., on Sunday called Trump’s indictment “a very sad time for America.”
“I would hope and pray that whatever comes forth, if they’ve done due diligence, they’re very, very accurate in what they’re doing and understanding that the rule of law is that basically no one’s above the law, but no one should be targeted by the law,” Manchin said during an interview with NBC News’ “Meet the Press.”
Manchin, however, also declined to endorse President Joe Biden for re-election.
Asked whether Biden should run again in 2024, Manchin replied, “Once the people of American speak, and that’s our president, then I’m going to do everything I can to help them be successful, whether it’s Donald Trump or whether it’s Joe Biden.”
New York Young Republican Club planning rally Tuesday with Marjorie Taylor Greene
The New York Young Republican Club, which organized a sparsely attended protest against Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg last month, is planning another rally Tuesday, this time headlined by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Ga.
Gavin Wax, one of the organizers, said at least two other elected officials might attend, although he didn’t name them since he said they hadn’t confirmed.
The group plans to gather at a small park near the Lower Manhattan courthouse around noon on Tuesday. Greene is expected to arrive around 1 p.m. Wax says he’s expecting a larger crowd this time because of Greene’s attendance.
When asked why Greene apparently changed her mind about joining a protest — she had previously said they weren’t necessary — Wax said: “She saw that we were able to gather and protest peacefully. … She understands the severity of the situation.”
“We view Alvin Bragg as derelict in his duties as district attorney,” Wax said. “He’s wasting taxpayers’ resources for a political witch hunt.”
Trump’s Sunday morning announcement that he will address the public from his Mar-a-Lago club following his expected arraignment Tuesday raises fascinating questions about his liberty to speak about the case.
Some legal experts believe the judge in the case may consider issuing a gag order to lower the temperature around a trial that Trump has publicly denounced and has subjected the prosecutor, Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, to threats.
The prospect of limiting what an active candidate for president can say — at a time he is arguing that the prosecutor and Democrats seek to silence his political movement — is a thorny question for the bench.
There’s little question that Trump would figure out how to turn a gag order into political gold with his base, even if there are particular words he can’t utter. He is making that clear by announcing his intent to make a speech the day of the arraignment. So, once again, Trump is pushing democratic values into uncharted — unprecedented — territory.
Former Manhattan DA warns Trump could face further legal trouble if he threatens judicial system
Former Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., who began the investigation that led to Donald Trump’s indictment, condemned the former president’s attacks against his successor on Sunday and warned that another criminal offense could “change the jury’s mind about the severity of the case.”
In an interview on NBC News’ “Meet the Press,” Vance said, “I’ve got to say that I was disturbed to hear the former president speak in the way he spoke about the district attorney, [Alvin] Bragg, and even the trial court in the past week.”
Trump escalated his rhetoric in the weeks ahead of the grand jury vote, warning of “potential death and destruction” should he be indicted, and referred to Bragg as an “animal.”
Vance, who left the Manhattan DA’s office at the end of 2021, suggested that Trump could face further legal backlash if he continues to wage attacks against Bragg and the judicial system, which he says could sway the jury in the case.
Read the full story here.
GOP Sen. Bill Cassidy gives first comments on Trump’s indictment
Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., reacted for the first time to Trump’s indictment on “Fox News Sunday,” saying in part, “No one should be above the law, but no one should be a target of the law.”
“As [former Attorney General] Bill Barr has said, this is less about the crime and more about the target. So it has to play out,” Cassidy said. “This is kind of set in motion, but on the other hand, what I think is the particular problem is it’s going to lead to all kinds of political theater that is going to distract from addressing the issues that are incredibly important to our country right now.”
Cassidy was one of seven Republicans who voted to convict Trump during the second impeachment trial in the wake of the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Cassidy also previously said he would not support Trump for president in 2024, prompting Trump to attack him as a “RINO,” or Republican in name only.
Trump announces Mar-a-Lago speech Tuesday night
Former President Donald Trump will give remarks Tuesday evening at his Florida resort, his campaign announced Sunday.
Trump is expected to surrender to authorities and be arraigned earlier that day in Manhattan. The former president was indicted Thursday and is facing about 30 charges in New York City related to document fraud connected to hush money he allegedly paid to cover up affairs, NBC News previously reported.
The exact charges are unknown because the indictment remains under seal until Trump appears in court for his arraignment. That is expected on Tuesday, though Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg could unveil the charges sooner. News organizations, including NBC News, have asked the judge for the indictment’s immediate release.