Georgia On His Mind, Donald Trump Indicted For Attempted Election Fraud.

Photo credit: White House. Getting indicted four times does not seem to have affected voter support for Donald Trump.
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Donald J. Trump, who is again running for election as President of the United States,  has been indicted on charges of “racketeering” and a string of election crimes after a two-year investigation into his efforts to overturn his 2020 election defeat by current president Joe Biden in the southern state of Georgia.

This is the most sweeping indictment against the former president. The 77-year-old Republican presidential candidate faces trials in New York, Washington, DC, and Florida in three other cases.

Prosecutors say the alleged conspiracy included enlisting a slate of so-called “fake electors” targeting several states; using the Justice Department to conduct “sham election crime investigations”; and trying to enlist the vice president to “alter the election results” — all in an effort to subvert democracy and stay in power after losing in an election.

Each time Donald Trump is indicted – and that has now happened four times since March – he raises even more money to finance his campaign and gets a boost from supporters in public opinion polls.

The Republican’s campaign team announced they had raised more than $4m in 24 hours after his first indictment in March in New York, over hush money blackmail payments made to porn star Stormy Daniels.

Team Trump also boasted about raising nearly $7m after he was charged in federal court in Florida in June over his handling of top-secret classified documents – the first time a sitting or former commander-in-chief has ever faced federal charges.

But even if Trump and his entourage are happy to brag about their fundraising successes on the back of his mounting legal problems, these cases are a double-edged sword.

The candidate has had no choice but to dip into the campaign coffers to pay millions of dollars in legal fees linked to the indictments – money that could have otherwise been used for television ads, rallies or campaign swings nationwide.

“His legal expenses are through the roof. Trump has already spent a large percentage of his contributions on legal expenses,” Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the University of Virginia, told AFP.

“And those expenses will only go up for months and months, maybe years, to come.”

The likelihood of the latest indictment against Donald Trump going to trial will depend on whether new legal questions could slow down prosecution due to the unprecedented nature of the case.

But first, there will be a formal reading of the charges in court, and defendants will be asked to enter pleas.

Trump’s lawyer could ask the court to waive the arraignment, and he could enter a plea of not guilty without having to appear in court. Bail would also be determined.

Steve Okun, a senior adviser at the geostrategic consultancy firm McLarty Associates, said the latest indictment against Donald Trump is more worrying than his other three criminal cases.

“There are many players in this including his former Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, and lawyers outside of Trump’s remit like Rudy Giuliani and Kenneth Chesebro who came up with the fake collector scheme which was also illegal and in a way to try to overturn this election,” he said.

“So all of those people have to ask themselves: do I tell the truth about what happened or do I go along with Donald Trump and continue to say this was a big lie, this is a witch-hunt, and the prosecutor is a racist?”

Trump has 18 codefendants on the indictment, and any of them might turn and give evidence against him to avoid a possible prison sentence for themselves.

Sources: Al Jazeera, BBC.


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