Arizona Republicans, including Kari Lake, denounce Donald Trump guilty verdict: ‘Egregious’

May 30, 2024, 3:45 PM

(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)...

(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — Arizona Republicans, including Kari Lake, were quick to express their frustration over their party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Donald Trump, being convicted on all counts in his hush money trial in New York.

Lake, a longtime Trump ally who is endorsed by the former president in her U.S. Senate run, said she didn’t agree with the verdict. Trump was convicted on all 34 counts, making him the first former president to be convicted of felony crimes.

“We just witnessed the most egregious example of election interference and an outright mockery of the rule of law in the 246-year history of our Republic,” Lake said in a statement. “This entire process right down to the verdict itself has been nothing but a shameful political stunt.”

Other members of the Arizona GOP, including the party itself, agreed with Lake’s assessment.

Rep. Andy Biggs called the trial “rigged from the start” and a “witch hunt.”

Rep. Debbie Lesko said she was “outraged over this unjust, un-American” verdict, while Rep. Eli Crane said “I stand with President Donald J. Trump.”

Rep. Paul Gosar offered a three-word reaction to the verdict:

The Arizona Republican Party said it supported Trump and Chairwoman Gina Swoboda offered a statement in favor of the former president.

“This conviction is a blatant assault on the principles of justice. President Trump’s trial was marred by bias and a predetermined agenda, stripping him of the fair trial to which every American is entitled to,” Swoboda said in a statement.

“We stand resolutely behind President Trump and the Arizona Republican Party will not waver in our fight to uphold justice and ensure that political opposition is not silenced through judicial overreach.”

Trump is expected to quickly appeal the verdict and will face an awkward dynamic as he seeks to return to the campaign trail as a convicted felon. There are no campaign rallies on the calendar for now, though he’s expected to hold fundraisers next week. It will likely take several months for Judge Juan Merchan, who oversaw the case, to decide whether to sentence Trump to prison.

Democrats react to Trump verdict

The Biden-Harris campaign released a statement shortly after the verdict was read.

“In New York today, we saw that no one is above the law,” Communications Director Michael Tyler said in a statement. “Donald Trump has always mistakenly believed he would never face consequences for breaking the law for his own personal gain.”

Lake’s challenger, Ruben Gallego, offered a brief statement supporting the verdict.

“I respect our justice system and the rule of law,” Gallego said. “The process played out, and we should always demand accountability from our elected leaders.”

U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly’s statement was similar to Gallego’s.

“We are a country of laws, and nobody is above the law,” Kelly said. “It’s a sad day for our nation to see, for the first time, a former president convicted on criminal charges. I respect the independence of our justice system and the integrity of this trial.”

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Arizona Republicans, including Kari Lake, denounce Donald Trump guilty verdict: ‘Egregious’