Former President Donald Trump on Dec. 19 dismissed the Jan. 6 committee’s criminal referrals, saying that the panel has leveled “fake charges” against him and they only make him “stronger.”
“These folks don’t get it that when they come after me, people who love freedom rally around me. It strengthens me. What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger,” Trump wrote in a statement posted on his Truth Social platform.
He added, “Americans know that I pushed for 20,000 troops to prevent violence on Jan 6, and that I went on television and told everyone to go home.”
Trump, who announced his third bid for the presidency in November, said members of the committee wanted to stop his presidential campaign.
“The people understand that the Democratic Bureau of Investigation, the DBI, are out to keep me from running for president because they know I’ll win and that this whole business of prosecuting me is just like impeachment was—a partisan attempt to sideline me and the Republican Party,” Trump added.
The House Select Committee on the Jan. 6 Capitol breach voted unanimously during a hearing on Monday to refer Trump to the Department of Justice on four criminal charges: insurrection, obstruction of an official proceeding, making a false statement to the federal government, and conspiracy to defraud the federal government.
“Our criminal referrals were based on the gravity of the offense, the centrality of the actors, and the evidence we had available to us,” Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), one of the seven Democrats on the committee, told reporters after the hearing.
Trump also compared the criminal referrals by the committee to his second impeachment trial, which acquitted Trump of an insurrection incitement charge in February last year.
“The Fake charges made by the highly partisan Unselect Committee of January 6th have already been submitted, prosecuted, and tried in the form of Impeachment Hoax # 2. I WON convincingly. Double Jeopardy anyone!” Trump wrote in a separate Truth Social post on Monday.
The referrals by the committee are not binding on the Department of Justice. However, if the federal department follows through with the committee’s recommendation, Trump could face up to 25 years in prison and fines.
By Frank Fang