Trump, facing 91 criminal charges, demands Biden impeachment in return

 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

As former president Donald Trump prepares for four trials on a total of 91 criminal charges in four separate jurisdictions, the disgraced, twice-impeached ex-chief executive is lashing out with new demands for his allies in Congress.

Mr Trump, who routinely and falsely accuses President Joe Biden of masterminding the prosecutions against him in New York and Georgia state courts, as well as two other sets of federal criminal charges in Washington, DC and Florida, called on his Republican friends in the House of Representatives to impeach Mr Biden as a matter of revenge.

Speaking at a Wednesday night rally in South Carolina ahead of the Palmetto State’s Republican presidential primary, Mr Trump said the House “ought to impeach” the 46th president for allegedly “weaponising the DOJ, the FBI, and even the local DAs and attorney generals against his political opponent”.

There is no evidence that Mr Biden has played any role in the criminal cases against Mr Trump in any way.

A set of charges he will be tried on in New York City next month stems from a years-long probe into whether he falsified business records, a crime in New York State, to cover up an affair with an adult film star ahead of the 2016 presidential election. The investigation was started while he was in office, when Mr Biden was a private citizen.

The sprawling racketeering case pending against him in Fulton County, Georgia, is the end result of a year-long investigation by a special purpose grand jury under supervision of Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. It arose out of Mr Trump’s efforts to browbeat Georgia election officials into falsifying election results after he lost the Peach State’s electoral votes in the 2020 election.

Mr Trump also faces federal charges for his efforts to remain in office after losing the 2020 election, as well as serious felony charges in the Southern District of Florida for allegedly unlawfully retaining national defence information after the end of his term and obstructing a grand jury probe into his alleged unlawful possession of the records. He also faces charges in that case for allegedly conspiring with two of his employees to stymie the grand jury investigation at issue there.

Those federal cases were brought after a Justice Department special prosecutor, Jack Smith, obtained indictments from two separate grand juries. Mr Biden was not involved.

Yet Mr Trump told rally goers on Wednesday that Congress should impeach Mr Biden because of the criminal cases against him, calling the charges “the most undemocratic thing that you can do”.

He also previously called for Mr Biden’s impeachment because of the two impeachments he faced as president, even though constitutional experts say no evidence has emerged that would justify doing so.

But the ex-president’s Republican allies in the House and Senate have shown no qualms about doing his bidding in the past.

Just last week, Republicans in the Senate tanked consideration of a border security and defence spending bill because Mr Trump did not want any new legislation passed to address the influx of migrants across the US-Mexico border.

And this week, House Speaker Mike Johnson said a separate Senate-passed defence spending bill to fund munitions manufacturing and aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan would not see the light of day in the House after Mr Trump called for Republicans to oppose it.

A Biden campaign spokesperson, Ammar Moussa, hit back against the ex-president in a statement noting that Mr Trump had “confirmed House Republicans are operating as an arm of his campaign and executing on his orders with their baseless impeachment inquiry”.

“Trump is running a campaign fit for a dictator - focused on revenge and retribution while President Biden focuses on how he can finish the job and deliver for American families,” he said.