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Trump guilty verdict reveals split among former GOP presidential primary opponents

Former President Donald Trump’s Republican presidential primary opponents offered a variety of reactions to the guilty verdict in his New York City trial, ranging from blasting Democrats for pursuing the charges against him to complete silence.

The jury found Trump guilty Thursday on all 34 counts of falsifying business records related to the hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels in the lead up to the 2016 presidential election.

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott posted a video of himself on X blasting what he called a ‘hoax,’ a ‘sham’ and evidence of an ‘obsolete injustice justice system.’

‘DA Bragg and the judge should be ashamed of themselves. This isn’t just ridiculous, this actually erodes the confidence that Americans have in the justice system. Unbelievable,’ Scott said.

‘But good news is coming. DA Bragg, hear me clearly. You cannot silence the American people. You cannot stop us from voting for change. Joe Biden’s injustice, Joe Biden’s two-tier injustice system, weaponizing the justice system of the United States of America against a political opponent, un-American. Joe Biden, you’re fired. We the people stand with Donald Trump.’

North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum wrote, ‘This verdict is a travesty of justice. The judge was a Biden donor. The prosecutors were Biden supporters. This Lawfare should scare every American. The American people will have their say in November,’ while entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy predicted the trial’s outcome would ultimately backfire, referencing District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s promise to ‘nail Trump,’ and Judge Juan Merchan’s daughter being a ‘Democratic operative.’

Former Vice President Mike Pence told Fox News Digital Trump’s conviction was ‘an outrage and disservice to the nation.’

‘No one is above the law, but our courts must not become a tool to be used against political opponents. To millions of Americans, this was nothing more than a political prosecution driven by a Manhattan DA who ran for office on a pledge to indict the former president and this conviction undermines confidence in our system of justice,’ he said. 

‘This conviction also sends a terrible message to the wider world about the American justice system and only further divides us at a time when the American people are struggling under the failed policies of the Biden administration at home and abroad. Having been convicted in a court of law, the former president has every right to appeal this conviction and I trust it will be overturned on appeal in a manner that will restore public confidence in our system of justice and equal treatment under the law.’

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wrote, ‘Today’s verdict represents the culmination of a legal process that has been bent to the political will of the actors involved: a leftist prosecutor, a partisan judge and a jury reflective of one of the most liberal enclaves in America — all in an effort to ‘get’ Donald Trump.’ 

‘That this case — involving alleged misdemeanor business records violations from nearly a decade ago — was even brought is a testament to the political debasement of the justice system in places like New York City,’ he wrote. ‘This is especially true considering this same district attorney routinely excuses criminal conduct in a way that has endangered law-abiding citizens in his jurisdiction.

‘If the defendant were not Donald Trump, this case would never have been brought, the judge would have never issued similar rulings, and the jury would have never returned a guilty verdict. In America, the rule of law should be applied in a dispassionate, even-handed manner, not become captive to the political agenda of some kangaroo court.’

Conservative commentator Larry Elder called the verdict an ‘outrage’ and declared that ‘a monster has been unleashed.’

‘If Democrats don’t think Republican AGs and DAs can’t unleash lawfare on Democrat politicians, think again!!!’ he added.

Businessman Perry Johnson wrote, ‘Today marks a troubling chapter in American history. This was always a political maneuver, not a legal one. The Biden Administration’s weaponization of the justice system is evident, showing that Democrats will go to any lengths to silence and eliminate political rivals.’ 

‘The American people recognize this as lawfare, and they understand its peril. President Trump will rightly appeal this unjust verdict — and he WILL WIN!’ he added.

Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, a staunch Trump critic, took a different, not-so-surprising approach, calling on the verdict to be respected.

‘It is not easy to see a former President and the presumptive GOP nominee convicted of felony crimes; but the jury verdict should be respected. An appeal is in order but let’s not diminish the significance of this verdict,’ he wrote.

Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and former Texas Rep. Will Hurd have so far remained silent since the verdict was handed down.

Representatives of Haley did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment. A spokesperson for Christie declined to comment.

This post appeared first on FOX NEWS

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