Trump's GOP defenders in Congress leap into action on charges after months of preparation
WASHINGTON Former President Donald Trumps indictment on charges of mishandling classified documents is set to play out in a federal court in Florida. But hundred of miles away, part of Trumps defense is well underway in a different venue the halls of Congress, where Republicans have been preparing for months to wage an aggressive counter-offensive against the Justice Department.
The federal indictment against Trump, unsealed Friday, includes 37 counts, including allegations that the former president intentionally possessed classified documents, showed them off to visitors, willfully defied Justice Department demands to return them and made false statements to federal authorities about them. The evidence details Trump's own words and actions as recounted by lawyers, close aides and other witnesses.
The Republican campaign to discredit federal prosecutors skims over the substance of those charges, which were brought by a grand jury in Florida. GOP lawmakers are instead working, as they have for several years, to foster a broader argument that law enforcement and President Joe Biden are conspiring against the former president and possible Republican nominee for president in 2024.