Former President Donald Trump is preparing to put America’s political and legal systems to the ultimate test.
Trump’s forecast on Saturday that he may be jailed this week and his effort to create a preemptive backlash made what had previously been a theoretical possibility of an ex-president and 2024 contender being legally accused look much more plausible.
And it warned that America is about to go on an even more divisive political ordeal that will put his hold on the Republican Party to the test.
The property magnate, reality TV celebrity, and former commander-in-chief are under investigation for trying to overturn the 2020 election and misusing classified documents after leaving office.
His most immediate exposure, though, maybe in a case involving an alleged hush money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels.
Trump had not received any official notification that he will be prosecuted by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, a Democrat, as of the weekend.
But, a grand jury process appears to be nearly finished, and Trump’s legal team has been prepared for the prospect of an indictment, according to CNN sources.
The case revolves around whether Trump illegally disguised a $130,000 payment made to Daniels by his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, to keep an alleged prior relationship secret ahead of the 2016 election.
The incident might be considered a violation of campaign finance laws. Trump believes that he did nothing wrong and has denied having an affair with Daniels.
But, the ex-president started a usual discredit effort, trying to intimidate prosecutors, mobilize his grassroots followers, and pressure key GOP leaders to come to his side.
Every American has the constitutional right to express themselves politically, but the ex-call president’s for his supporters to “protest, take our nation back” this weekend struck an ominous tone given that he showed on January 6, 2021, that he was willing to incite violence to further his interests.
Trump’s lawyer, Alina Habba, told CNN’s Paula Reid on Sunday that if Trump is indicted for a misdemeanor, which is one conceivable conclusion of the Manhattan investigation, there would be heavy consequences.
“It is going to cause mayhem, Paula. I mean, it’s just a very scary time in our country,” Habba said. But she also said that “no one wants anyone to get hurt” and Trump supporters should be “peaceful.”