In a late-night social media post, Donald Trump mused that “potential death and destruction” could ensue if he’s indicted by a Manhattan grand jury for a hush-money payment to Stormy Daniels.
The former president posted the ominous message on Truth Social shortly after 1 a.m. Friday morning.
“What kind of person can charge another person, in this case a former president of the United States, who got more votes than any sitting president in history, and leading candidate (by far!) for the Republican Party nomination, with a crime, when it is known by all that NO crime has been committed,” he wrote, “& also that potential death & destruction in such a false charge could be catastrophic for our Country? Why & who would do such a thing? Only a degenerate psychopath that truely hates the USA!”
His rant was targeted at Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, who’s been overseeing probes into Trump’s involvement with the hush money payment sent to Daniels during his 2016 presidential run and, earlier this year, brought charges against the Trump organization.
Trump has been railing against Bragg all week. Last Saturday, Trump referenced the Manhattan probe and announced that he believed he “WILL BE ARRESTED ON TUESDAY OF NEXT WEEK.” That prediction didn’t come to pass.
He’s since elevated his attacks on Bragg with inaccurate claims about his campaign for the job and background, adopting the tone of a comic book villain.
“Just Out: District Attorney Alvin Bragg received in EXCESS OF ONE MILLION DOLLARS from Radical Left Enemy of ‘TRUMP,’ George Soros,” Trump posted on Monday. “Bragg is also very close to the Clinton Campaign.”
It’s unclear who Trump’s referring to as the “Clinton Campaign” in 2023, but Bragg’s connection to Soros is more indirect, and one frequently targeted by Republicans as they rail against progressive DAs: Bragg received support in his 2021 campaign from a liberal group that endorses progressive prosecutors, which Soros donated to.
But Friday’s post showed an escalation in Trump’s rhetoric from threatened to threatening.
When Trump called for his supporters to “PROTEST!!!” last Saturday, some congressional Republicans tried to soften the message, urging supporters to stay calm.
“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with calling for protests,” House Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) told reporters over the weekend. “Americans have the right to assemble, the right to protest. And that’s an important constitutional right. And he doesn’t have to say peaceful for it to mean peaceful. Of course, he means peaceful. Of course, President Trump means peaceful protests.”
TPM will be waiting with bated breath to see how the MAGA right tries to spin “death and destruction” in the coming days.
Update: After a reporter showed him the post, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) responded that he can’t read well without his glasses.