“The worst would have been if Trump had been accused of sedition”

Donald Trump suffered the biggest setback of his political career on Tuesday evening. A setback, however, which can hardly have a negative impact on his campaign to be reintegrated into the White House. The Justice Department has formalized indictments against the former president on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to violate the rights of citizens, obstruction of an official process, and conspiracy to obstruct an official process. Four alleged crimes allegedly committed by the tycoon and six members of his immediate circle, who are not mentioned in the indictment, are summarized on 45 pages. to undermine the outcome of the November 2020 presidential electionin which he lost to Democratic candidate Joe Biden.

Trump’s attorneys met with several officials from Special Counsel Jack Smith’s office days before the indictment. Because? What do you think they discussed at that meeting?

It is not uncommon for the defense and prosecution to have a “pre-charge” meeting in high-profile cases. It is usually the defense’s final attempt to persuade the prosecution that the case cannot be brought when the facts or the law do not support the charge, or that it should not be brought when public policy or other reasons warrant it make it seem inadvisable. At this point, the defense has a pretty good idea of ​​the nature of the charges the Special Counsel is considering: where he intends to indict — ultimately in Washington — and what evidence he intends to present. It is unusual in a criminal proceeding to know so much about the case before it is filed. Trump’s attorneys were likely trying to persuade prosecutors not to press charges, not to press specific charges, or to review the timing of indictments.

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Trump already has three more open cases. Which trial are you most likely to be convicted of? And what is legally more serious?

Perhaps most legally and politically serious, in the Jan. 6 case, Trump was personally charged with “sedition” or “seditious conspiracy” under Section 1505 of Title 18 of the U.S. Code, for which he could be fined or sentenced could face at least 20 years in prison or both. This would be related to his calling on his supporters to discourage them from voting. Both cases are serious because they affect the heart of the electoral process and democracy.

It is likely that the dates of the respective trials will coincide with the Republican Party primary and the presidential election campaign. Could one of the cases nullify his candidacy?

It’s always possible. But much of this is already built into the way people evaluate Trump’s candidacy anyway. In fact, we learn little about the former president that we didn’t already know. Of their Republican opponents, only former prosecutors Chris Christie and Asa Hutchinson are raising the issue, and the electorate doesn’t seem to care. In short, your critics will definitely not vote for you, and your supporters will definitely support you. And there are very few people in between.

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