NYC Speaker Johnson passionately protests Trump trial outside courthouse

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) strongly criticized the hush money trial involving former President Trump during his remarks outside the Manhattan courthouse on Tuesday. This visit made him the highest-ranking lawmaker to visit Trump in New York during the ongoing legal proceedings.

Johnson, who stood next to Trump in the courthouse hallway before giving a statement outside, strongly criticized the case against the former president as an act of “election interference.” He argued that prosecutors are attempting to prevent Trump from hitting the campaign trail during his race against President Biden.

According to Johnson, President Trump has been in court for five weeks now, which he considers to be a sham of a trial. He believes that this is a deliberate tactic to keep the President away from the campaign trail. Johnson is confident that the American people can see through this strategy.

He later declared that President Trump is innocent of these charges.

GOP lawmakers have been rallying around the former president, showing their support as he attends the hush money trial in a Manhattan courtroom. Reps. Byron Donalds (R-Fla.) and Cory Mills (R-Fla.) were also present alongside Trump at the courthouse on Tuesday.

Sen. JD Vance (R-Ohio), Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), and Rep. Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.) made their way to New York on Monday to show their support for Trump. Standing outside the courthouse, they echoed similar sentiments.

Johnson’s presence alongside Trump during his trial is significant as he is the highest-ranking lawmaker to do so. This signals that the House GOP conference fully supports the former president, regardless of his ongoing legal challenges.

Speaking to reporters near the Manhattan criminal court where the trial of former President Trump is underway, Speaker Mike Johnson shared his thoughts on Tuesday, May 14, 2024. (AP Photo/Stefan Jeremiah)

In a show of support, the Speaker expressed his backing less than a week after the House successfully thwarted an attempt led by Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) to remove him from his position. Majority of Republicans voted in favor of tabling Greene’s move, effectively safeguarding the Speaker from a conservative coup. This outcome has been attributed, at least in part, to the public endorsement from Trump.

During his own political struggles, Johnson made a trip to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago last month. It was during this visit that Trump made a statement, declaring his support for the Speaker. Trump continued to back the Louisiana Republican on multiple occasions and even took to social media to encourage Republicans to vote against the motion to remove the Speaker. However, it is worth noting that Trump’s post on Truth Social was published after the vote had already taken place.

Johnson willingly attended Trump’s trial on Tuesday, referring to the former president as a “friend,” he informed the reporters.

“I personally reached out to President Trump, expressing my desire to be present here today to condemn this blatant disregard for justice. I believe people across the nation can clearly see the injustice that has unfolded,” Johnson expressed. “President Trump is a close ally and it was important for me to show my support by being present here.”

“I returned here today, once again, to show my personal support for President Trump. Like countless others, I am a concerned citizen who shares deep apprehension about the current situation,” he later expressed.

As Trump’s ex-fixer Michael Cohen took the stand for the second day, Johnson made an appearance to join his Republican colleagues in questioning and challenging Cohen’s credibility as a witness.

According to Johnson, the individual in question is driven by a personal vendetta and has a reputation for being an unreliable witness.

“He has a reputation for perjury, and it is well-known. We should not trust anything he says today,” he emphasized.

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