Former President Donald Trump claimed in an all-caps rant that he will be arrested this Tuesday as a New York prosecutor homes in on a possible indictment.
The twice-impeached ex-president urged his fans to protest and “take our nation back” in response.
“THE FAR & AWAY LEADING REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE & FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, WILL BE ARRESTED ON TUESDAY OF NEXT WEEK,” Trump wrote to his Truth Social app on Saturday morning.
“PROTEST, TAKE OUR NATION BACK!” the former president added, echoing his Jan. 6, 2021 calls for MAGA acolytes to gather in D.C. to protest Congress certifying the election victory of now-President Joe Biden. On that note, CNN reported that Trump’s advisers have privately urged him not to call for such protests out of concerns that it could lead to violent riots like the ones at the Capitol.
Nevertheless, later Saturday, the ex-president posted yet again in all-caps: “WE MUST SAVE AMERICA! PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST!!!”
Despite Trump’s claim of a Tuesday arrest, a spokesperson for the ex-president told The Daily Beast that there has been “no notification” beyond “illegal leaks from the Justice Dept. and the DA’s office,” that prosecutors “decided to take his Witch-Hunt to the next level.” The spokesperson added: “President Trump is rightfully highlighting his innocence and the weaponization of our injustice system.” The New York District Attorney’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The expectations of an indictment come amid a probe focused on hush money Trump allegedly directed be paid to ex-porn star Stormy Daniels, who alleged an affair with the former president. Last week, Manhattan prosecutors gave the clearest signal yet that Trump was to be indicted by inviting the former president to testify to a grand jury, the New York Times reported.
Michael Cohen, who testified to a grand jury in the case earlier this week, criticized his former boss’ post. “#DiaperDonald clearly knows something not yet disclosed to the public,” he wrote Saturday morning. Cohen told the New York Post he thinks Trump is trying to “rile his base” and profit off their anger, as he’s done in the past. “Donald’s post is eerily similar to his battle cry prior to the January 6th insurrection; including calling for protest,” Cohen added to the Post.
Jonathan Turley, an attorney and professor at George Washington University Law School who is “highly critical of the case” against the ex-president, criticized Trump’s call for his supporters to take action: “However, given recent history, Trump needs to tap down any inflammatory rhetoric as we move forward,” he wrote on Twitter.
The former president did just the opposite as Saturday progressed, growing increasingly deranged on Truth Social as he called on his supporters to act.
Continuing in all caps, Trump wrote that the country is in “steep decline” and being led into World War III by a “crooked politician who doesn’t even know he’s alive.” He echoed Republican talking points irrelevant to his possible indictment—like claims of Democrats having defunded the police and military—before calling on his supporters to take to the streets.
“WE JUST CAN’T ALLOW THIS ANYMORE,” Trump wrote. “THEY’RE KILLING OUR NATION AS WE SIT BACK & WATCH. WE MUST SAVE AMERICA! PROTEST, PROTEST, PROTEST!!!”
—Zachary Petrizzo contributed reporting.