McCarthy Says People Shouldn’t Protest Or Engage In Violence If Trump Is Indicted


House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Sunday urged “calmness” in response to former President Donald Trump’s social media post calling for widespread protests after claiming the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office is preparing to arrest him Tuesday.

Key Facts

Speaking at a press conference during the House Republicans’ annual retreat in Orlando, McCarthy told reporters, “I don’t think people should protest this…We want calmness out there.”

The House Speaker urged people not to harm one another over this, and said he does not believe there should be “any violence” if the indictment against Trump comes through.

McCarthy claimed people misinterpreted Trump’s post—where he asks his supporters to protest and “take our nation back,”—and added that the former president was “not talking in a harmful way, and nobody should.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.), a vocal supporter of Trump and a close McCarthy ally, told reporters she didn’t see anything wrong with the calls for protests and said that the former president “of course” means peaceful protests, even though he did not explicitly say that.

McCarthy noted that he has asked Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, to lead a probe into the Manhattan District Attorney’s criminal investigation of Trump and find out if any federal funds were used to conduct the investigation.

Key Background

In a post on his Truth Social platform on Saturday, Trump said he will be arrested by the “corrupt and highly political” Manhattan District Attorney’s Office on Tuesday as he called supporters to protest. The post claimed he was “far and away leading Republican candidate” for the 2024 election, adding that the charges against him were just an “old & fully debunked fairytale.” The case Trump was referring to is an investigation into an alleged hush money payment of $130,000 made to adult film star Stormy Daniels weeks before the 2016 presidential election. Daniels has alleged she had an affair with the former president. Earlier this month, the New York Times reported that the Manhattan District Attorney office, which is leading the probe, informed Trump’s lawyers that the former president may face criminal charges.

News Peg

Following Trump’s post, several top Republican leaders attacked Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg and alleged his investigation into the former president was politically motivated. Calling a potential indictment “an outrageous abuse of power,” McCarthy warned he would direct House committees to investigate if federal funds were used to interfere in the 2024 presidential election “with politically motivated prosecutions.” Greene also expressed support for the former president, saying he did nothing wrong, as she claimed without evidence that the DOJ was coordinating with Bragg’s office. Former Vice President Mike Pence was also critical of the purported indictment, calling it a “politically charged prosecution.”

Further Reading

Trump Says He Will Be Arrested Tuesday—Urges Supporters To Protest (Forbes)

Speaker McCarthy Threatens Federal Probe If Trump Arrested—Pence, Greene, Graham, More Blast Prosecutors (Forbes)

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