I’ve heard people say Trump jumped into the 2024 primary campaign early to increase his revenue stream from donors and protect himself from prosecutors.
I realize it helps to have an official campaign to solicit campaign donations, but I don’t understand how running for office protects someone from criminal prosecution. Is there some legal protection he now has that he didn’t have before, or is he simply running out the clock hoping to get elected and pardoned in the process? Of course, that would only help him for federal prosecutions…
There’s supposedly a rule that the DOJ can’t do something (indictment or otherwise) 60 (or 90 or something) days before an election that might sway the results. I’ve been trying to google a cite for this, but there’s quite a lot of “n days before election” rules and can’t seem to find one.
This came up most egregiously with Comey announcing days before the 2016 election that the FBI was examining “new” (they weren’t new) email copies related to HRC. They weren’t new information, the DOJ said “nevermind!”, and arguably this action threw the election to Trump, and very arguably this violated DOJ policy.
There is nothing - nothing - protecting Trump from prosecution because he’s a candidate. Optically it’s a little weird, but there’s no law or policy or anything else that protects him two years out from an election.
Mostly just his own experience, it seems to me. He’s repeatedly seeing that his political importance is leading to him being treated differently. He largely sees this as a battle with public opinion, and that he can convince people that any prosecution is political as long as he is still a politician of some sort.
And, of course, his goal is to delay everything and become president, and then get rid of it entirely. Delaying things until they go away is Trump’s go-to tactic even before he became president. That and moving on to something even more outrageous that makes people forget about the previous thing.
The main idea is that, as part of the Biden administration, Garland may have a conflict of interest in terms of going after Biden’s likely opponent in 2024. That is why Garland assigned an independent special counsel to handle the investigation. It doesn’t really make that much of a difference since Trump was obviously going to be a potential rival whether or not he formally declared, but by making it explicit Trump hopes to be able to claim that it is utterly unfair and entirely political.
This is it. He hopes to be able to claim…anything. And with his followers, that hope is never too distant. He could declare that Merrick Garland is a huge reptile (and probably has) and at least half of his supporters will think (or profess to think) it’s true. Half of those will be willing commit felonies in defense of his absurd statements. And half of those will actually commit the felonies.