Pelosi, Dems calls Trump's arrest warning 'reckless,' accuse him of fomenting 'unrest'
Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on Saturday slammed former President Donald Trump's statement that he expects to be arrested next week, calling it "reckless" and accusing him of inciting violence.
"The former president's announcement this morning is reckless: doing so to keep himself in the news & to foment unrest among his supporters," tweeted Pelosi, the former House speaker. "He cannot hide from his violations of the law, disrespect for our elections and incitements to violence. Rightfully, our legal system will decide how to hold him accountable."
Pelosi's tweets came after Trump announced he anticipates his arrest on Tuesday amid reports saying the Manhattan district attorney's office is preparing to issue an indictment for alleged hush money payments that Trump made as a presidential candidate in 2016.
TRUMP RECEIVED 'NO NOTIFICATION' OTHER THAN 'ILLEGAL LEAKS' ABOUT POSSIBLE ARREST NEXT WEEK, SPOKESPERSON SAYS
"NOW ILLEGAL LEAKS FROM A CORRUPT & HIGHLY POLITICAL MANHATTAN DISTRICT ATTORNEYS OFFICE, WHICH HAS ALLOWED NEW RECORDS TO BE SET IN VIOLENT CRIME & WHOSE LEADER IS FUNDED BY GEORGE SOROS, INDICATE THAT, WITH NO CRIME BEING ABLE TO BE PROVEN, & BASED ON AN OLD & FULLY DEBUNKED (BY NUMEROUS OTHER PROSECUTORS!) FAIRYTALE, THE FAR & AWAY LEADING REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE & FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, WILL BE ARRESTED ON TUESDAY OF NEXT WEEK. PROTEST, TAKE OUR NATION BACK!, [sic]" Trump posed to his Truth Social account.
In her tweets, Pelosi hinted at the potential for an indictment against Trump.
"Whatever the Grand Jury decides," wrote Pelosi, "its consideration makes clear: no one is above the law, not even a former President of the United States."
Pelosi wasn't the only Democrat to comment on Trump's statement on Saturday. Indeed, her successor as the top House Democrat, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., appeared to be referencing Trump in a tweet lambasting "right-wing extremists" for "inflammatory" rhetoric.
"We live in a democracy," wrote Jeffries. "Right-wing extremists who fan the flames of political violence with inflammatory rhetoric are not fit to serve. American values over autocracy."
Meanwhile, Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., took aim at House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., for saying he's directing House committees to investigate whether federal funds are being used for "politically motivated prosecutions" amid reports that Trump could be indicted as early as next week.
"Here we go again: Kevin McCarthy once again playing the part of criminal defense counsel to shield Trump from accountability," tweeted Schiff. "Heedless of the consequences to the country, he stirs the pot, and calls for an investigation of the investigators. It's all part of Trump's playbook."
Rep. Eric Swalwell, R-Calif., similarly accused McCarthy of "using his powers in government to stop an independent prosecution of his boss."
Rep. Ted Lieu similarly slammed McCarthy, claiming he "bends the knee" to Trump.
"Dear [McCarthy]: Do you even know what the charges are?," wrote Lieu. "Have you seen any of the grand jury evidence? No. You are being a craven, partisan politician who doesn’t respect the rule of law. In America, no one is above the law, including the person to whom you bend your knee."
Lieu also tweeted that no one is above the law, including former presidents, but noted that Trump has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty "beyond a reasonable doubt to a judge or jury."
TRUMP TARGETED: A LOOK AT PROBES INVOLVING THE FORMER PRESIDENT; FROM STORMY DANIELS TO RUSSIA TO MAR-A-LAGO
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's office will reportedly meet with law enforcement officials to discuss logistics for some time next week regarding a potential indictment, which stems from a years-long investigation into Trump's alleged hush money scandal involving porn star Stormy Daniels.
In the final weeks of the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump's then-lawyer Michael Cohen sent $130,000 to Daniels to prevent her from disclosing her alleged 2006 affair with Trump, who has denied the affair. Trump subsequently reimbursed Cohen.
Charges that prosecutors may bring against Trump are expected to relate to the false recording of the reimbursements in his company's internal records as "legal expenses."
It's also been widely speculated that Trump could be charged with violating campaign finance laws by arranging the payments to buy Daniels' silence weeks before the 2016 election. However, some experts have questioned the legal reasoning behind such a charge.
Trump spokesperson Steven Cheung described the ongoing investigation by the Manhattan district attorney's officeas a "witch hunt," calling the former president "completely innocent" and accusing District Attorney Alvin Bragg of being in the pocket of President Biden and "radical Democrats."