: “Will Trump’s Indictments Crush His Comeback in 2024 or Revive His Political Career?”

Is Trump Still Teflon? Examining the Effects of the Latest Federal Indictment

Former President Donald Trump has faced legal issues for years, but many of them never seemed to stick. Hence, his nickname “Teflon Don.” However, with a second federal indictment, it begs the question — is he still Teflon?

The Indictment and Trump’s Reaction

The latest indictment, which alleges that Trump conspired with a close aide, Waltine “Walt” Nauta, to resist returning classified materials stored at his Mar-a-Lago home despite receiving a subpoena, was brought by special counsel Jack Smith. It includes seven charges, among them conspiracy to obstruct justice, corruptly concealing documents, making false statements, and willful retention of national defense information. It marks the second pending indictment against Trump, the first being the 34 counts Alvin Bragg brought in early April.

While many speculate about the implications of these charges against Trump’s presidential campaign and potential run in 2024, Trump’s hardcore supporters aren’t moved. In fact, it could even galvanize them more. Trump himself revealed the indictment in a Truth Social post, calling it the “Boxes Hoax.”  He then sent out a fundraising appeal, arguing that the indictment was “nothing but a disgusting act of Election Interference by the ruling party.” 

Most of the GOP hopefuls who spoke about the issue didn’t attack Trump directly. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis tweeted that the “weaponization of federal law enforcement represents a mortal threat to a free society.” Meanwhile, Asa Hutchinson tweeted that Trump should drop out of the race and “put the good of the country above his candidacy,” while Chris Christie added, “no one is above the law, no matter how much they wish they were.”

Trump’s Legal Troubles

Of course, with mounting legal troubles, it might be harder for Trump to secure the Republican nomination for the 2024 presidential race and alienate independent voters critical to winning a general election. Legal issues that could pose significant risks to Trump’s comeback include potential indictments based on an investigation into whether Trump and his allies broke state laws by trying to overturn the 2020 election result. 

Another potential issue is that the documents case adds to mounting legal difficulties for Trump. Perhaps one of the most significant reasons is that no former U.S. President has ever faced criminal charges on the federal level until now, placing everyone in an uncharted territory.

What Is Next for Trump?

While it’s too early to predict what will happen to Trump, one thing is sure – his legal team will try to slow down court proceedings. They could aim for the trial to take place until after the 2024 election, in the hopes that a Republican president chooses to end the case.

Judge Aileen Cannon, a Trump appointee randomly assigned the case in Florida, will determine the case’s pretrial and trial calendars. She surprised legal experts last fall by siding with Trump’s request to appoint a special master to review documents seized by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago. The move at least temporarily stopped federal prosecutors from continuing their investigation into the case.

So, while we wait for Judge Cannon’s decision, we can only speculate on Trump’s chances of becoming “Teflon” again. It’s clear that the indictment adds to his many legal troubles, which could turn away independent voters critical to winning a general election. It’s also notable that no other U.S. President has encountered such criminal charges, signaling a new landscape for legal matters related to Presidents.

In conclusion, this indictment’s consequences are yet to be determined, but it’s clear that many are waiting to see what happens next.

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