Prison 2024: Legal Expert Thinks Donald Trump’s ‘Orange Jumpsuit’ Could Be Close
It was a harrowing weekend for former President Donald Trump. Multiple investigations are closing in on him, and the fallout
It was a harrowing weekend for former President Donald Trump. Multiple investigations are closing in on him, and the fallout from the Mar-a-Lago FBI raid continues to grow.
There is an internal war going on between Republican leadership and Trump's team over the timing of his announcement for the 2024 presidential race. Republicans want him to wait until after the Fall midterms, believing that his hat in the arena too soon could push anti-Trump Democrats and Independents to the polls in numbers large enough to lose them the advantage they currently enjoy heading into the Fall.
But Trump believes that being a candidate could provide protection and is eager to get his name out there officially. One official says that strategy is likely to backfire, and another legal expert believes that Mar-a-Lago could be a straight line between the former President and prison.
See: Donald Trump Under Investigation for Violating Espionage Act, Obstruction of Justice Per Unsealed Warrant
George Conway: Mar-a-Lago Could Spell Prison Time for Trump
Trump is facing multiple investigations. A Georgia prosecutor is investigating possible crimes related to election, and the January 6 House panel is zeroing in on his culpability for the violent raids at the Capitol in 2021.
But one legal expert thinks that the documents taken from Mar-a-Lago could be the most dangerous development for Trump's freedom.
Republican lawyer and conservative activist George Conway, outspoken critic of Donald Trump, says he believes that what the FBI uncovered at Mar-a-Lago spells trouble for Trump.
Business Insider reports, "Speaking to CNN's Jim Acosta on Saturday, Conway said he thought the probe — which involved the FBI searching Trump's Florida home last Monday for classified documents — carried a high likelihood of the former president being prosecuted for his actions.
'I think the shortest distance between Donald Trump and an orange jumpsuit is this investigation with the documents,' Conway said.
'We haven't heard anything remotely approaching a rational, logical defense,' Conway added."
According to Conway, Trump took the documents because he felt entitled to – and there's no compelling defense for why he chose to keep them at his private residence.
Trump for his part is trying to draw attention away from his own culpability, calling the Department of Justice and FBI corrupt and in a "stranglehold" by the "radical left."
The former President also alleged that his own private documents were seized illegally during the raid, taking the dubious step of posting on his social media Truth Social to try to compel the FBI to return them, writing, "Oh great! It has just been learned that the FBI, in its now famous raid of Mar-a-Lago, took boxes of privileged 'attorney-client' material, and also 'executive' privileged material, which they knowingly should not have taken. By copy of this TRUTH, I respectfully request that these documents be immediately returned to the location from which they were taken. Thank you!"
Trump later posted, "America has never suffered this kind of ABUSE in Law Enforcement! For the FBI to RAID the home of the 45 President of the United States, or any President for that matter, is totally unheard of and unthinkable. This Break In was a sneak attack on democracy (our Republic!), and was both unannounced and done at a time when the President was not even present. It was for political, not legal reasons, and our entire Country is angry, hurt, and greatly embarrassed by it. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!"
Running for President Raises the Stakes, it Doesn’t Protect Trump
All of the attention and legal escalation may push Trump to do the one thing Republicans hope he won't do until after November: announce his candidacy for 2024.
One expert has weighed in on whether or not this will provide any protection, as Trump seems to believe.
Paul Rosenzweig, a former deputy assistant secretary for policy in the Department of Homeland Security, believes that his announcement will raise the stakes for Attorney General Merrick Garland to the degree that he cannot find a way out of bringing charges against Trump.
Raw Story reports, "Richard Nixon was pardoned by his predecessor Gerald Ford on the assumption he would leave politics for good, and Bill Clinton also evaded prosecution by agreeing to step back from public life, but Trump instead has remained the unquestioned leader of the Republican Party and its frontrunner for the 2024 nomination.
'If Trump had chosen to retire to Mar-a-Lago and play golf or even if he had retreated to his resort and continued to exercise influence over the Republican party but chosen not to run again for office,' Rosenzweig wrote, 'I suspect that Attorney General Merrick Garland would have welcomed the excuse to forgo a prosecution of Trump.'
'Garland would likely have judged the precedent be too significant and the risks to civil society to extreme,' he added."
But because Trump remains in the public eye and looks to continue his time in power, those prosecuting potential crimes have no option but to press forward instead of offering him a delicate and prudent out such as other former Presidents enjoyed when they stepped down from power.
Whether any of the investigations will yield criminal charges or not and whether Trump will announce before the midterms all remains to be seen. But it's clear from his posts on Truth that Trump is feeling pressure, and Trump under pressure is always unpredictable.