You would never know it from Donald Trump’s interminable bluster, but the only President of the United States to have been impeached twice is facing truly serious legal and criminal liability on multiple fronts. While the media has tended toward covering individual developments as they arise, a focus on the extraordinary breadth and depth of Trump’s legal problems has been hard to find. However, as we head further into 2022 and these problems mount, addressing the larger elephant in the room is getting harder for media outlets to ignore.
A few days ago, Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd dedicated a segment of his radio show to “the legal problems that are now piling up against” Trump. “Nothing like this has ever happened before,” NPR’s Andrea Bernstein noted as she was interviewed. “There hasn’t been a President who has faced so much exposure, including having his company under criminal indictment, while he is considering running for President a second time.”
Many people would be surprised to discover how much legal hot water Trump is swimming in. Fortunately, the staff of The Guardian just made that easy. “The long list of legal cases against Donald Trump” presents Trump’s outrages resume of troubles, current as of February 1, 2022. The topics run the gamut from greedy financial maneuvers and disturbing sexual assault allegations to election interference, insurrection, and more. Roughly half of the 19 pending civil or criminal legal actions relate to Trump’s behavior while in office.
There is more at play here than whether Trump is ultimately found guilty or liable in these 19 matters. As these cases proceed, damaging evidence may emerge to help throw a wrench into Trump’s possible plans for a 2024 run. This, in turn, can drain the voter enthusiasm the GOP desperately needs for November’s midterm elections.
When O’Dowd asked Bernstein how these cases might interfere with Trump’s political future, she first reiterated how this situation is unprecedented.” However, she then offered one way these cases might cause cracks in the foundations of Trump’s support. “One thing we do know is this: if there’s a trial, we will learn a whole lot more about how Donald Trump’s business ran. That may give voters information that they find very interesting.” Keep the popcorn toward the front of your pantry.