Donald Trump's indictment makes me support him – but more indictments would help
A New York grand jury’s decision to indict former President Donald Trump has certainly made me like him better. But I’m going to have to learn exactly how indicted he is before deciding whether he’ll get my vote in the GOP presidential primary.
Don’t get me wrong, Trump’s new status as the first former president ever charged with a crime is impressive – a real feather in his MAGA cap when it comes to voters like myself whose reasoning makes perfect sense.
But I’m not one of those naïve folks who just run off with the first candidate to get charged in connection with an alleged hush money payment to an adult film star. No, before I decide who I’m willing to trust the future of my country to, I need to make sure that person has been REALLY indicted. Hopefully multiple times.
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Now that doesn’t mean I’m unfaithful to Trump. Like a number of high-profile Republicans, I’m treating his indictment like it’s the worst thing that has ever happened to America. And I’m wisely doing that before seeing the indictment, the charges themselves and the testimony and other information that convinced a grand jury, made up of regular people doing their civic duty, that a former president should be criminally charged.
As former Vice President Mike Pence told CNN: “I think the unprecedented indictment of a former president of the United States on a campaign finance issue is an outrage. It appears to millions of Americans to be nothing more than a political prosecution.”
And Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said: “From a political point of view, it’s going to solidify Trump’s standing in the Republican Party.”
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I agree with those thoughts, and there’s definitely no chance we’ll all end up looking bad once the actual evidence against Trump is revealed. That would be ridiculous! (Pardon me a moment, I need to submerge my face in a pie and then wonder why I have pie on my face.)
So I’m mad about the indictment, but the measure of how much the indictment increases my support of Trump as a candidate remains to be seen.
For example, how many counts are in the indictment? Is it just a couple measly charges, or will he be facing dozens? I don’t want a commander-in-chief who has only been lightly indicted. That could be a sign of weakness, or perhaps an indication he has not done enough to own the libs.
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What if another GOP candidate has more or better indictments?
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been working overtime to own the libs in his state — fighting with Disney, flying migrants to Martha’s Vineyard, being mean to teachers — so what if he suddenly gets indicted and it’s a bigger indictment than Trump’s?
Heck, there could be a potential candidate out there we haven’t heard of yet, maybe someone who’s going to be indicted for allegedly paying hush money to TWO adult film stars. If I consider Trump’s indictment a vile political prosecution, I’d have to consider that other theoretical candidate’s double-indictment even worse. That’s just math.
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We just need to wait and see if Trump's campaign has the additional indictments needed to win
The point is, I’d feel like a real fool if I had already thrown my support behind the former president only to have someone more indicted come along as the clear people’s champion.
That’s basic political common sense.
So while I’m outraged beyond measure at a thing I have no way of fully understanding, and while I wholly support Trump and believe he’s being martyred by socialists, I’m holding out hope that more indictments will come from the numerous other criminal investigations he's facing.
If Trump was to nab an indictment for violating the Espionage Act by hiding classified documents at Mar-a-Lago, my support for him would skyrocket.
If the Fulton County district attorney in Georgia indicted him on racketeering charges relating to his alleged efforts to overturn the state’s presidential election results? Well, in my book, that’d be a slam dunk for his candidacy.
New York case against Trump one of many: Trump's indictment is first-ever for a former president. Three more are also possible.
I pledge to support whichever GOP presidential candidate garners the most indictments
Time will tell. As much as I’d love to join the masses in the Republican Party hoisting Trump on a pedestal for this New York indictment, I’m going to have to take a healthy pause.
It’s only fair to give the others who decide to run for the GOP nomination a fair shake.
May the most indicted candidate win!
Follow USA TODAY columnist Rex Huppke on Twitter @RexHuppke and Facebook facebook.com/RexIsAJerk
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: What does Trump indictment mean? Nothing. He's still has GOP support