2 Pro-Impeachment Senators Question Motives Behind Trump Indictment

Joe Manchin, a Democrat, and Bill Cassidy, a Republican, both voted to convict Donald Trump after Jan. 6. They expressed concern on Sunday that the criminal case against him is political.

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2 Pro-Impeachment Senators Question Motives Behind Trump Indictment | INFBusiness.com

Donald J. Trump addressing supporters during a rally in Waco, Texas, last month.

Two senators who voted to convict former President Donald J. Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol — one a Republican and one a Democrat — have raised concerns that Mr. Trump has been improperly targeted by the Manhattan district attorney, Alvin Bragg, even before they have learned the details of the indictment.

“It’s just a very, very sad day for America,” said Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia, the Democrat, referring to Mr. Trump’s indictment in an interview on “Fox News Sunday.”

“Especially when people are maybe believing that the rule of law or justice is not working the way it’s supposed to and it’s biased — we can’t have that,” Mr. Manchin said. “But on the other hand, no one’s above the law. But no one should be targeted by the law.”

Image“No one’s above the law,” Senator Joe Manchin said. “But no one should be targeted by the law.”Credit…Michael A. McCoy for The New York Times

Senator Bill Cassidy, Republican of Louisiana, who cemented himself as an enemy of Mr. Trump’s with his conviction vote for Jan. 6, 2021, went even further on the same Fox News program — casting doubt over the ethics and motivations of the Manhattan prosecutor.

“It’s wrong. I’ll put it this way — no one should be the target of the law,” Mr. Cassidy said. “This seems to be more about the person than about the crime.”

The charges have not yet been revealed, as the indictment is under seal and is expected to remain sealed until Mr. Trump is arraigned in a Manhattan court, leaving both Mr. Trump and those supporting him commenting on what is not known. The expectation has been that some of the charges Mr. Bragg will bring relate to falsifying business records. People with knowledge of the document say it includes more than two dozen criminal counts.

“Just a reminder that there is no rule that you have to express your opinion before reading the indictment,” Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii, a Democrat, said sarcastically in a tweet on Thursday evening after the news broke.

Image“This seems to be more about the person than about the crime,” Senator Bill Cassidy said.Credit…Al Drago for The New York Times

Senators Cassidy and Manchin were not the only figures on Mr. Trump’s blacklist who appeared on Sunday television programs to criticize the indictment, even as they avoided explicitly defending or praising the former president himself.

The former attorney general William P. Barr, who fell out bitterly with Mr. Trump because he refused to go along with his efforts to overturn the 2020 election, sharply criticized Mr. Bragg’s indictment and predicted it would set off a wave of politically motivated prosecutions across the country.

“The real danger of this thing over the long term,” he said on “Fox News Sunday,” is that “we now have thousands of” district attorneys nationally “now that the Rubicon has been crossed, any one of them can find federal candidates or federal officeholders and so forth, can find some state law they want to pursue the person on and get themselves into the national political arena.”

“I do think that this is a watershed moment, and I don’t think it’s going to end up good for the country,” he added.

Source: nytimes.com

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