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Tipsheet

BREAKING: Donald Trump Indicted by Manhattan Grand Jury

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

A Manhattan grand jury voted to indict 45th President of the United States Donald Trump on Thursday in a case pursued by District Attorney Alvin Bragg dealing with a "hush money" payment made to Stormy Daniels during the 2016 presidential election cycle. 

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The felony indictment — the first against a former president — was filed under seal by Bragg's office and will, presumably, be unsealed and announced in the days to come, but that means the broader public does not yet know which charges on which the grand jury voted to indict the former president-turned-2024 presidential candidate. 

As Townhall previously reported, the former president's lawyer Joseph Tacopina has said Trump will surrender to face the charges and be arraigned in-person after a remote option was reportedly not preferred by the district attorney's office. That process, if Trump indeed appears in-person, will involve a negotiated surrender between Trump's legal team, the United States Secret Service, and authorities in Manhattan. Trump will be fingerprinted, photographed, and formally arraigned.

Trump responded to the indictment with a lengthy statement: 

This is Political Persecution and Election Interference at the highest level in history. From the time I came down the golden escalator at Trump Tower, and even before I was sworn in as your President of the United States, the Radical Left Democrats - the enemy of the hard-working men and women of this Country - have been engaged in a Witch-Hunt to destroy the Make America Great Again movement. You remember it just like I do: Russia, Russia, Russia; the Mueller Hoax; Ukraine, Ukraine, Ukraine; Impeachment Hoax 1; Impeachment Hoax 2; the illegal and unconstitutional Mar-a-Lago raid; and now this.

The Democrats have lied, cheated and stolen in their obsession with trying to ‘Get Trump,’ but now they’ve done the unthinkable - indicting a completely innocent person in an act of blatant Election Interference. 

Never before in our Nation’s history has this been done. The Democrats have cheated countless times over the decades, including spying on my campaign, but weaponizing our justice system to punish a political opponent, who just so happens to be a President of the United States and by far the leading Republican candidate for President, has never happened before. Ever. 

Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg, who was hand-picked and funded by George Soros, is a disgrace. Rather than stopping the unprecedented crime wave taking over New York City, he’s doing Joe Biden’s dirty work, ignoring the murders and burglaries and assaults he should be focused on. This is how Bragg spends his time!

I believe this Witch-Hunt will backfire massively on Joe Biden. The American people realize exactly what the Radical Left Democrats are doing here. Everyone can see it. So our Movement, and our Party - united and strong - will first defeat Alvin Bragg, and then we will defeat Joe Biden, and we are going to throw every last one of these Crooked Democrats out of office so we can MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

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On Wednesday, the former president posted on Truth Social about the “respect” he had gained for the grand jury that indicted him on Thursday:

I HAVE GAINED SUCH RESPECT FOR THIS GRAND JURY, & PERHAPS EVEN THE GRAND JURY SYSTEM AS A WHOLE. THE EVIDENCE IS SO OVERWHELMING IN MY FAVOR, & SO RIDICULOUSLY BAD FOR THE HIGHLY PARTISAN & HATEFUL DISTRICT ATTORNEY, THAT THE GRAND JURY IS SAYING, HOLD ON, WE ARE NOT A RUBBER STAMP, WHICH MOST GRAND JURIES ARE BRANDED AS BEING, WE ARE NOT GOING TO VOTE AGAINST A PREPONDERANCE OF EVIDENCE OR AGAINST LARGE NUMBERS OF LEGAL SCHOLARS ALL SAYING THERE IS NO CASE HERE. DROP THIS SICK WITCH HUNT,  NOW!

Prior to the official grand jury indictment, the Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives launched an inquiry of D.A. Bragg for what GOP committee chairmen say is "an unprecedented abuse of prosecutorial authority: the indictment of a former President of the United States and current declared candidate for that office" that "comes after years of your office searching for a basis—any basis—on which to bring charges, ultimately settling on a novel legal theory untested anywhere in the country and one that federal authorities declined to pursue."

The fact that the legal case Bragg is likely to bring is untested means a court could limit the charges handed up by the grand jury or throw out Bragg's case altogether. 

Ronna McDaniel, chairwoman of the Republican National Committee, reacted to the indictment by torching Bragg for engaging in a "blatant abuse of power" and warning a "weaponized" justice system "endangers all of us."

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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, considered a likely 2024 primary opponent to Trump, also chimed in to blast the "un-American" "weaponization of the legal system" that "Soros-backed" Bragg has engaged in. What's more, DeSantis said "Florida will not assist in an extradition request given the questionable circumstances at issue with this Soros-backed Manhattan prosecutor and his political agenda."

This story was updated to include reaction from Donald Trump, RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. As a developing story, it may be further updated. 

Editor's Note: If they can come for a former president actively campaigning to take back the White House, they can come for us, and they can come for you. 

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