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Reactions as former President Donald Trump arraigned in New York City

2023-04-04T19:15:33Z

Former U.S. President Donald Trump arrives at Manhattan Criminal Courthouse, after his indictment by a Manhattan grand jury following a probe into hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels, in New York City, U.S., April 4, 2023. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

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. He pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to 34 felony counts of falsifying business records.

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 Tuesday’s arraignment:

REPRESENTATIVE ADAM SCHIFF:

“A somber moment in the life of our country, when it’s necessary to arraign a former president on criminal charges,” Schiff, a Democrat of California, wrote on Tuesday afternoon.

“As the case falls to the DA to prove, we must recognize what is most important: Even the most powerful are held to account, and that nobody is above the law,” wrote Schiff, who was the lead prosecutor in the Senate impeachment trial of Trump in 2020.

SENATOR MARCO RUBIO:

“Today is a bad day for all of us & we are all going to regret it for a very long time,” Rubio, a Republican of Florida, tweeted.

“Today we set the new normal that if you really want to take someone down, nothing should stop you. You should be able to manipulate the law anyway you want to charge someone,” Rubio said in a video posted on his Twitter account, describing the charges against Trump as “absurd.”

REPRESENTATIVE JAMAAL BOWMAN:

“Take responsibility, hold yourself accountable, and go away,” Bowman, a Democrat of New York, said when reporters asked if he had a message for Trump.

“I stand w/Trump & will always fight against those who want to destroy our Republic,” Paxton, a Republican, said in a tweet.

WHITE HOUSE:

“I think the American people should feel reassured that when there is an ongoing case like this one that we’re just not commenting,” White House spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters in a press briefing on Tuesday.

SENATE MAJORITY LEADER CHUCK SCHUMER:

Schumer, a Democrat of New York, tweeted: “I believe that Donald Trump will have a fair trial that follows the facts and the law. There’s no place in our justice system for any outside influence or intimidation in the legal process. As the trial proceeds, protest is an American right, but all protests must be peaceful.

REPRESENTATIVE MADELEINE DEAN:

“Mr. Trump was a president of many firsts — none of which were good for our country. His arraignment is another first — all of his own making,” tweeted Dean, a Democrat of Pennsylvania, adding that the twice-impeached president was “an immoral man” and a “corrupt citizen.”

SENATOR TED CRUZ:

“The indictment of Donald Trump is wholly political and baseless,” said Cruz, a Republican of Texas, on Twitter.

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