Trump calls indictments poll
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Former President Donald Trump declared Friday that the growing list of charges he faces have only helped his campaign and said he considers each indictment a “truly great badge of honor.”
Trump, 77, appeared unphased about his legal troubles as he delivered a speech at the annual Alabama GOP dinner in Montgomery, just one day after he pleaded not guilty in Washington, DC on charges alleging he conspired to overturn the 2020 presidential election.
“It’s not going to make any impact, because every time they file an indictment we go way up in the polls,” Trump, the frontrunning Republican presidential candidate, told the crowd.
“We need one more indictment to close out this election,” he joked, to cheers. “One more indictment and this election is closed out, nobody has even a chance.”
Trump has been indicted three times since March. The latest charges, filed Tuesday after an investigation by special counsel Jack Smith, accuse Trump of knowingly spreading false information about widespread voter fraud after he lost the 2020 election to President Biden.
Trump told the crowd Friday that he referred to the indictments as “a badge of honor” because he is “being indicted for you.
“So, thanks a lot,” he said.
As expected, Trump tore into Biden and the “corrupt” Justice Department, saying charges could have been filed against him years ago, but instead “they waited right until the middle of the election.
“They waited until I became the dominant force in the polls because we’re dominating everyone, including Biden, in the polls. And then they filed them all, everyone one of them, at the same time.”
The 45th president blasted the trio of indictments as “election interference” and called the latest case “an outrageous criminalization of political speech.”
“This ridiculous indictment against us, it’s not a legal case — it’s an act of desperation by a failed and disgraced Joe Biden and his radical thugs,” Trump said.
“The reason this is happening is simple: Joe Biden is the most incompetent and at the same time the most corrupt president in the history of the United States,” he continued.
“Every time more Biden corruption is exposed his henchmen indict me because they want to knock out the bad publicity,” he said, calling it a “cover up” for the “Biden crime family.”
Earlier in the day, Trump posted on his Truth Social a vague warning: “IF YOU GO AFTER ME, I’M COMING AFTER YOU.”
He had reportedly been warned not to issue threats by the judge during Thursday’s arraignment
Trump is also facing a federal indictment in Florida related to his mishandling of classified documents that he stashed at his Mar-A-Lago estate and an indictment in New York state over alleged hush money payments he made ahead of the 2016 election.
Despite his legal troubles, Trump has maintained a commanding lead of other Republican candidates. According to the latest compiled polling data from FiveThirtyEight, Trump leads the GOP field at 53.5%, followed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis at 14.3% and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy at 6.7%.