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Democrats Dream of Donald Trump in Jail. It Only Makes Him More Powerful

Donald Trump
Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally at the Phoenix Convention Center in Phoenix, Arizona back in 2016. Credit: Gage Skidmore.

Will former president Donald Trump run for reelection in 2024?

The question burns bright. The left dreads nothing more than a resurgent Trump, which is odd given Governor Ron DeSantis’s conservative conviction and latent political power. The right loses sleep over a Trump run, too, knowing that Trump has the capacity to further tarnish the GOP’s reputation – and further grant credibility to the alt-right. Trump hasn’t announced his 2024 intentions yet.

But Donald Trump seems to gravitate towards the spotlight; it’s hard to imagine an eligible, potent Trump just sitting out the election, letting DeSantis or Pence take up the GOP mantle.

Although, pundits are beginning to wonder whether Trump’s ever-mounting legal problems have crossed some sort of threshold, finally rendering him incapacitated. Doubtful. I would need a calculator to determine how many times Trump has been sued. He doesn’t seem to miss a beat. He’s been impeached twice – and shrugged off each attempt. Trump isn’t going to capitulate because of some new lawsuit, or even some number of new lawsuits. He’s reckless, brash, resilient, and very much a contender for the White House. And his most legal drama – the raid on his Mar-a-Lago mansion – isn’t hampering Trump’s political prospects. Quite the opposite. Donald Trump is benefitting from the raid.

“Trump and his Republican allies are fundraising off of [the] FBI raid of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate,” ABC reported, “providing another platform for Trump to capitalize financially on government investigations related to him.” Naturally. You’ve gotta strike while the iron’s hot. “Trump’s Save America PAC sent out a fundraising email” right after the raid “in which Trump urged supporters to “rush in a donation IMMEDIATELY to publicly stand with me against this NEVERENDING WITCH HUNT.”

Indeed, “Trump may believe that an indictment could help his political profile,” NBC reported, “promoting his longtime campaign theme of being an aggrieved martyr. Already he’s been able to raise tremendous sums based on telling his core supporters there’s an election conspiracy that denied him re-election; actual proof of criminal targeting under the Biden administration could be catnip to these followers.”

Aaron Blake, writing for The Washington Post, believes it’s too early to see how the Mar-a-Lago raid will affect Trump’s reelection prospects. “There is some indication [the raid] might actually have rallied the GOP to Donald Trump, at least temporarily. The sense of persecution, long fed by Trump, has proved an invaluable political commodity, and he’s got plenty of grist for that mill – whatever the actual legitimacy of his highly speculative claims of political targeting,” Blake wrote. “But the political impact of the Mar-a-Lago search won’t be measured in the polls conducted in the next couple of weeks.

This is a long game. And the legal jeopardy Trump faces could well reinforce some of the reasons DeSantis appears to have gained on him in earlier surveys. Namely: Trump’s uncertain electability and the political baggage he totes along with him.” Blake went on to rate Trump as the second most likely GOP nominee, behind DeSantis.

Dennis Aftergut, a federal prosecutor, suggested the raid would inspire Trump to run for office – not because of the political bump, but because he now sought presidential immunity; Aftergut suggested that Trump would be motivated to run for office to avoid prison time. “Any fear [Trump] has of losing has surely been displaced by a more serious one: doing time,” Aftergut wrote. “Trump must pine for the Justice Department’s shield from prosecution that the presidential seal affords.”

Liberals have long been fixated on incarcerating Trump; putting Trump behind bars is like the liberal Ark of the Covenant. Personally, I’d prefer to see some of that liberal drive and energy diverted toward reestablishing a middle class or something.

If Donald Trump tucked away classified documents in his personal home, then he’s an idiot. And if he broke the law, he should be subjected to the consequences of the law as any citizen might. But the liberal fixation on punishing Trump is weird. And even if the ongoing investigation is kosher, it comes on the heels of several wishful, botched criminal inquiries, setting up something of a Boy Who Cried Wolf scenario. The liberal hopes pinned to the latest investigation have the potential for rich irony, for in hoping and attempting to destroy Trump, they might just phoenix the guy.

Harrison Kass is the Senior Editor at 19FortyFive. An attorney, pilot, guitarist, and minor pro hockey player, he joined the US Air Force as a Pilot Trainee but was medically discharged. Harrison holds a BA from Lake Forest College, a JD from the University of Oregon, and an MA from New York University. He lives in Oregon and listens to Dokken. Follow him on Twitter @harrison_kass.

Written By

Harrison Kass is a Senior Defense Editor at 19FortyFive. An attorney, pilot, guitarist, and minor pro hockey player, he joined the US Air Force as a Pilot Trainee but was medically discharged. Harrison has degrees from Lake Forest College, the University of Oregon School of Law, and New York University’s Graduate School of Arts & Sciences. He lives in Oregon and regularly listens to Dokken.



  1. Jacksonian Libertarian

    August 27, 2022 at 6:07 pm

    They hate him because he can’t be bought, and they have been.

    They hate him because he has power, a power they would abuse if they held it.

  2. George McAfee

    August 28, 2022 at 2:41 am

    Why is it democrats and republicans here? Do you believe that he never did anything wrong and everything that has been said about him is political? Do you see him as a victim? That seems idiotic.

    So what if it makes him more “powerful”? Should all people who are accused of wrongdoing be given the benefit of the doubt? When did he become royalty?

  3. Yrral

    August 28, 2022 at 10:23 am

    They should build a jail , especially for Trump,Trump is criminal insane,and should be institutionalize at least,he is clear and present to democracy norm,and his followers, should be lock up along with him,if they choose his criminal path

  4. Donny in orange jumpsuit

    August 28, 2022 at 3:34 pm

    Stunning that his cult is willing to ignore his lifelong criminal path. Hell, they even are willing to give him a pass for stealing government documents and obstructing justice. I’m not sure how you leap from criminal actions to growing stronger. We are a country of laws and nobody is above that threshold. No matter how low the bar is set TFG was able to slither under, but it appears he has met his match.

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