Charges Trump showed classified documents to golf club guests ‘concerning’, says Nikki Haley

Comments are a sign that Republicans may be becoming more relaxed about criticising the ex-president over alleged crimes

John Bowden
Washington DC
Sunday 30 July 2023 17:47 EDT
Trump insists Jan 6 indictment doesn’t ‘frighten’ him

GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley says she’s concerned about the new allegations levied at Donald Trump by the Justice Department, a sign that the Republican field may be growing more comfortable with openly criticising the former commander-in-chief.

Ms Haley was speaking in an interview that aired on Sunday on CBS’s Face The Nation when she was asked about new charges filed by the Department of Justice in a superceding indictment this past week accusing Mr Trump of showing classified information to guests at his Bedminster, New Jersey golf club — as well as a new charge of obstructing justice.

The former UN ambassador, appointed under Mr Trump, responded that she was very concerned “if these accusations are true”.

The most recent accusations, notably, are supported by an audio recording of the Bedminster meeting in question in which Mr Trump can be heard exclaiming that documents he was holding (or gesturing to) were classified.

“I think we need to see it,” Ms Haley said, presumably referring to the extent of the DoJ’s evidence. “You know, I think we've heard about it. I think that we know that there's something out there. But look, everybody's innocent until they're proven guilty. And like I said, if this is true, it's incredibly dangerous to our national security. And I think that will play out, but I think that we have to go and see what all the facts are.”

She added: “[I]f these accusations are true, it's incredibly dangerous to our national security. But again, this is coming down from a Department of Justice that, frankly, the American people don't trust. “

Mr Trump’s latest criminal indictment — his second — brings the total number of charges he now faces up to 74, split among state and federal jurisdictions. A third is expected to drop within days, charging him with crimes related to the months-long effort by his team to change the 2020 election results including his actions leading up to and during the January 6 attack.

Altogether, the charges depict an unprecedented pattern of criminality stemming back from before Mr Trump was ever elected to the stunning end of his administration in January 2021.

He now battles for the 2024 Republican nomination, eager to use the powers of the presidency to thwart as much of the legal pressure he now faces as possible, while facing a crowded GOP field seemingly undaunted by his continued polling dominance and utter rout of his party rivals in 2016.

Mr Trump has denied guilt in any of the dozens of criminal counts of which he is accused, and maintains that the Justice Department is conspiring with the Biden White House to block him from the presidency.

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