“This verdict is a disgrace. A continuation of the greatest witch hunt of all time!” Former President Donald Trump bellowed in a surly and defensive tone on two videos posted to his Truth Social account.
He was responding to the Manhattan jury’s determination that Trump was liable of defamation and battery (sexual assault) of the New York journalist, E. Jean Carroll. The accusations stem from an alleged incident that occurred between Trump and Carroll in the dressing room of Bergdorf Goodman in Manhattan in the 1990s.
This ruling came on the heels of the George Soros-backed Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s grand jury investigation into claims that Trump paid hush money to the pornographic actress, Stormy Daniels, in the run-up to the 2016 Presidential Election. Trump was indicted for that accusation. His next trial date in Manhattan is set for early December.
This, as Trump’s uneven campaign for reelection continues.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump has more legal woes facing him. In fact, the first two were the least serious of the cases arrayed against him. The next two could cost Trump dearly, not only electorally but on a personal level as well.
There is in Atlanta a grand jury investigation into whether Trump attempted to steal the Georgia election in 2020. In Washington, D.C., there is another grand jury investigation into claims that Trump mishandled classified documents.
Trump’s Growing Legal Concerns
Personally, I’d think that the Georgia case is far more serious since there is a fairly damning recording of the former president speaking with the Republican governor of Georgia demanding that he “find 11,780” more votes for Trump than what existed.
According to Barr, the special counsel leading the government’s investigation into the matter could indict Trump as early as this summer. Like the Georgia recount case and the E. Jean Carroll case, Barr thinks that Trump’s public comments during the chaotic CNN townhall he participated in will be the reason for why the classified documents case in Washington, D.C. is serious.
Time and again, Donald Trump has proven that he is his own worst enemy. It’s really sad to see, because the GOP seems fixated on promoting him as the likely presidential nominee in 2024 at the expense of far more qualified and disciplined candidates—notably Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis.
Whatever flaws DeSantis may have, he has never inflicted so much public self-harm onto his career or personal life the way that Trump has over the years.
Trump is desperate to link all his current legal woes to the previous unfair, politically charged witch hunts that dogged his presidency. To be fair to the former president, the Stormy Daniels case is a nothingburger and an example of prosecutorial overreach.
In all likelihood that “zombie case” is another example of the ongoing war that Trump’s various political enemies have waged against the forty-fifth president in a desperate effort to weaken his bid for power.
Jean Carroll’s Civil Case
What’s more, the E. Jean Carroll case was partly an overreach. After all, the statute of limitations had expired if not for a bit of legal legerdemain that New York had engaged in where they extended the statute of limitations for sexual assault cases.
And, given Trump’s extreme unpopularity in New York, it is likely that no jury in the Big Apple was going to let Trump walk, no matter how thin the case against the forty-fifth president was.
Yet, the jury did not say Trump was guilty of rape. They instead found him guilty of the lesser battery charge. As for the defamation claim, Trump did make vicious statements about Carroll in public and could not prove them.
Thus, he was liable (remember this was the guy who, in 2016, wanted to lower the standards for libelous speech so that he could sue everyone who ever said a mean thing about him. So, he was hoist by his own petard in this case).
The fact of the matter is, in the Carroll case, the jury was fairer than what Trump should expect the next grouping of juries to be. In the previous two cases listed above, the evidence against Trump was paper-thin.
It’s All Downhill From Here…
In the two upcoming cases involving the classified documents and his scandalous recording asking for thousands of additional votes to be found in Georgia in 2020, the evidence against him is far stronger.
Therefore, Trump is likely to be saddled with at least one more indictment in the coming months.
With each indictment, Trump grows stronger in the GOP Primary. After the provably false Russia collusion delusion concocted by a politicized US intelligence community during Trump’s first term in office, Republican voters overwhelmingly assume that every case against Trump is, in fact, part of that great witch hunt.
Donald Trump Cannot Be the Nominee Again
Whatever the motivations behind those accusing Trump, the former president did make himself susceptible to these cases. And these cases, while they serve his political prospects well in the GOP Primary, they are damaging his chances in the General (if Ron DeSantis doesn’t knock Trump out in the primary, that is).
Trump cannot win the General Election without the support of independent voters—most of whom hate the forty-fifth president. If Trump enters the General Election against Joe Biden carrying with him the pall of three or four indictments, he’ll be sunk.
This is the sad reality facing the GOP if it nominates Trump this election cycle.
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (May 16), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.