Former President Donald Trump ramped up his inciteful rhetoric in a social media post that pushed back on calls for peaceful protest amid reports of his impending arrest.
Last Saturday, Trump said he was expecting to be arrested by Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg over the investigation into hush money payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels. He has not been arrested, though he has used the claim that he is being unfairly prosecuted to raise $1.5 million in campaign donations.
Trump called for Bragg to drop the case in an ALL CAPS rant posted Thursday morning:
WHY WON’T BRAGG DROP THIS CASE? EVERYBODY SAYS THERE IS NO CRIME HERE. I DID NOTHING WRONG! IT WAS ALL MADE UP BY A CONVICTED NUT JOB WITH ZERO CREDIBILITY, WHO HAS BEEN DISPUTED BY HIGHLY RESPECTED PROFESSIONALS AT EVERY TURN. BRAGG REFUSES TO STOP DESPITE OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE TO THE CONTRARY. HE IS A SOROS BACKED ANIMAL WHO JUST DOESN’T CARE ABOUT RIGHT OR WRONG NO MATTER HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE HURT. THIS IS NO LEGAL SYSTEM, THIS IS THE GESTAPO, THIS IS RUSSIA AND CHINA, BUT WORSE. DISGRACEFUL!
Sixteen minutes later, he posted:
EVERYBODY KNOWS I’M 100% INNOCENT, INCLUDING BRAGG, BUT HE DOESN’T CARE. HE IS JUST CARRYING OUT THE PLANS OF THE RADICAL LEFT LUNATICS. OUR COUNTRY IS BEING DESTROYED, AS THEY TELL US TO BE PEACEFUL!
Trump’s rejection of those calling for calm — “THEY TELL US TO BE PEACEFUL!” — comes as political tensions remain high in the country. A number of Trump allies have called for Americans to remain peaceful in their protests, including Rudy Giuliani, who said as much during a Twitter Spaces interview.
It does not take a genius to see that Trump is suggesting that a violent approach to protest — like the one that struck the Capitol on Jan. 6 — is still very much on the table. In classic Trump fashion, however, he is also not saying that.