Reaction to former President Donald Trump’s indictment

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 (Reuters) – Donald Trump has been indicted by a Manhattan grand jury after a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels, becoming the first former U.S. president to face criminal charges.

The charges from an investigation led by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg come as Trump seeks the Republican nomination to run again in 2024.

Below is reaction to news of the indictment:

TRUMP IN A STATEMENT SAID HE WAS “COMPLETELY INNOCENT”:

“This is Political Persecution and Election Interference at the highest level in history.”

FLORIDA GOVERNOR AND POTENTIAL CHALLENGER FOR THE 2024 REPUBLICAN NOMINATION RON DESANTIS ON TWITTER:

“The weaponization of the legal system to advance a political agenda turns the rule of law on its head. It is un-American,” he wrote.

“Florida will not assist in an extradition request given the questionable circumstances…”

TRUMP’S FORMER VICE PRESIDENT AND POTENTIAL CHALLENGER FOR THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION MIKE PENCE ON CNN:

“I think this is an outrage but I also think at a time when the American people are struggling so much, that this will only further serve to divide our country.”

U.S. SENATE MAJORITY LEADER CHUCK SCHUMER, A DEMOCRAT, IN A STATEMENT:

“Mr. Trump is subject to the same laws as every American. He will be able to avail himself of the legal system and a jury, not politics, to determine his fate according to the facts and the law.”

“I encourage both Mr. Trump’s critics and supporters to let the process proceed peacefully and according to the law.”

TRUMP’S FORMER U.N. AMBASSADOR AND CANDIDATE FOR THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION NIKKI HALEY ON TWITTER:

“This is more about revenge than it is about justice.”

TRUMP’S FORMER LAWYER RUDY GIULIANI ON TWITTER:

“The 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, has been indicted by a Grand Jury in New York following District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s irresponsible and politically-motivated efforts to take him down. A sad day for America.”

FORMER U.S. HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI, A DEMOCRAT, IN A STATEMENT:

“The Grand Jury has acted upon the facts and the law. No one is above the law, and everyone has the right to a trial to prove innocence. Hopefully, the former President will peacefully respect the system, which grants him that right.”

DEMOCRATIC U.S. REPRESENTATIVE ADAM SCHIFF ON TWITTER:

“The indictment of a former president is unprecedented. But so too is the unlawful conduct in which Trump has been engaged. A nation of laws must hold the rich and powerful accountable, even when they hold high office. Especially when they do. To do otherwise is not democracy.”

MICHAEL COHEN, FORMER LAWYER TO TRUMP, ON MSNBC:

“Today’s indictment is not the end of the chapter, it is just the beginning … Accountability really matters.”

REPUBLICAN U.S. SENATOR TED CRUZ ON TWITTER:

“The Democrat Party’s hatred for Donald Trump knows no bounds. The ‘substance’ of this political persecution is utter garbage. This is completely unprecedented and is a catastrophic escalation in the weaponization of the justice system.”

(Compiled by Costas Pitas and Anna Driver)

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