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Donald Trump, 2019 Student Action Summit, Jan 6th
Former President Donald J. Trump. Photo credit: Illustration by WhoWhatWhy from Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 2.0) and Chad Davis / Flickr (CC BY 2.0).

Former President Donald Trump got indicted... again. This time, he is facing charges related to his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia.

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Remember that crazy time in April when a former US president was indicted for the first time ever on any charges? Or that time in June when a former president was indicted for the first time ever on federal charges? Or that time in July when a former president was indicted for the first time ever for attempting a coup?

Say what you want about Donald Trump, but he has certainly made the extraordinary look routine… at least when it comes to getting indicted.

However, what happened in Georgia last night is still historic. The former president and 18 other defendants were charged with a variety of crimes connected to their efforts to overturn Joe Biden’s 2020 victory in the Peach State.

Trump led the way with 13 counts, and his co-conspirators included such prominent names as former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, as well as several lawyers who may also end up facing federal charges.

“Defendant Donald John Trump lost the United States presidential election held on November 3, 2020. One of the states he lost was Georgia,” the indictment says. “Trump and the other Defendants charged in this Indictment refused to accept that Trump lost, and they knowingly and willfully joined a conspiracy to unlawfully change the outcome of the election in favor of Trump.”

Perhaps more than in other states, the former president’s actions in Georgia were particularly well documented. In addition to spreading the usual lies about the election, Trump also called Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) and urged him to “find” the votes he needed to prevail.

The charges brought Monday night were the result of a sweeping investigation of the former president conducted by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, a Democrat who has been drawing Trump’s ire for months.

Predictably, the former president took to social media to insult Willis in one of his trademark error-riddled and reality-challenged posts.

“So, the Witch Hunt continues! 19 people Indicated tonight, including the former President of the United States, me, by an out of control and very corrupt District Attorney who campaigned and raised money on, ‘I will get Trump,’” he wrote on his “Truth Social” site. “And what about those Indictment Documents put out today, long before the Grand Jury even voted, and then quickly withdrawn? Sounds Rigged to me! Why didn’t they Indict 2.5 years ago? Because they wanted to do it right in the middle of my political campaign. Witch Hunt!“

Surprisingly, his rant includes a valid point.

Hours before Trump was officially indicted, the Fulton County court briefly posted a document that detailed most of the charges the former president faced.

Because it was quickly removed, it is not clear what exactly that document was. It did not include all of the charges Trump and the other defendants ultimately faced, but it does raise some valid questions.

“The Fulton County District Attorney’s Office has once again shown that they have no respect for the integrity of the grand jury process,” stated Trump’s attorneys Drew Findling and Jennifer Little in response to the flap. “This was not a simple administrative mistake. A proposed indictment should only be in the hands of the District Attorney’s Office, yet it somehow made its way to the clerk’s office and was assigned a case number and a judge before the grand jury even deliberated. This is emblematic of the pervasive and glaring constitutional violations which have plagued this case from its very inception.”

In some ways, the latest indictment is the most perilous for Trump.

First and foremost, if the former president were to be convicted and sentenced to prison, there is no mechanism in Georgia to pardon him prematurely, and he would have to serve his time. 

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