At his hearing on Tuesday, former President Donald Trump pleaded not guilty to 34 felony charges of falsifying business documents linked to 2016 hush money payments.
Political Leaders’ Reactions to Trump’s Indictment
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Speaker Kevin McCarthy have both weighed in on the unsealed indictment and related statements of facts. Schumer called the indictment a “significant moment in the ongoing pursuit of justice,” while McCarthy called it a “disgraceful abuse of power.”
While this was happening, Elise Stefanik, who is known for being a strong supporter of Trump, expressed her disapproval of the Manhattan district attorney’s office. She claimed that Trump’s arrest during his arraignment was a “radical DA’s” dangerous and unlawful overreach. Other conservative Republicans agreed with Stefanik’s statement and reiterated their support for Trump.
On the other side of the aisle, Democratic lawmakers focused their messaging on support for the “justice system,” or district attorney Alvin Bragg, who is leading the years-long investigation of Trump in New York City. Democratic Representative Eric Swalwell tweeted that “justice benefits all of us,” while Representative Jamaal Bowman of New York told Marjorie Taylor Greene to “go back to Washington and do something about gun violence.”
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Protests and Lawmakers’ Reactions
Protests took place outside the Manhattan courthouse, with Trump supporters and foes facing off against each other. Protesters were urged to be peaceful, with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer saying that “all protests must be peaceful.” Representative George Santos, an embattled freshman Republican, showed up to support Trump at the courthouse and said he stood by the former president from the moment he came down the escalator.
Meanwhile, as reported by ABC News, Democratic Representative Eric Swalwell tweeted that Trump should be given the equal protection and due process he has deprived others of. Democratic Representative Jamaal Bowman of New York told Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene to go back to Washington and do something about gun violence. Representative Michael Greene, one of Trump’s most ardent supporters, called Trump’s indictment “election interference.”
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