Trump supporters attack Miami’s Republican mayor outside Trump arraignment

Mayor Francis Suarez, a Republican, called a ‘swamp monster’ outside arraignment

Abe Asher
Tuesday 13 June 2023 22:39 BST
Trump departs for Miami courthouse to face federal charges

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, a Republican reportedly days away from launching a campaign for president, was called a “swamp monster” by an irate Donald Trump supporter outside the courthouse where the former president is set to be arraigned on federal charges today.

Mr Suarez, 45, has been critical of Mr Trump in the past and reportedly did not vote for him for president in 2020. That presumably did not endear him to supporters of the former president, who has pleaded not guilty to a plethora of charges regarding his handling of classified documents after leaving the presidency and alleged attempts to impede the government’s attempts to get the documents back.

“We’ve got a Deep State corrupt mayor!” a Trump supporter screamed at Mr Suarez as he made his way towards the courthouse on Tuesday afternoon. “We’ve got a Deep State swamp monster! We’ve got a swamp monster folks! We’ve got a big swamp monster! Swamp’s getting rounded up, baby! Time’s coming, baby! The swamp’s getting taken down, and you’re getting taken down, brother.”

The indictment of Mr Trump over his handling of classified documents has once again inflamed the passions of his most ardent supporters, who are arguing that the prosecution of the former president amounts to a political witch-hunt against him as he campaigns to reclaim the White House next year.

That is not, however, a view shared by everyone who served with him in his first presidential administration. William Barr, the former attorney general, called the notion that Mr Trump is a victim in the situation “ridiculous,” and Mike Pompeo, the former Secretary of State, said that, if the allegations against the former president are true, his behaviour was “wrong.”

Mr Trump is the first former president ever charged with federal crimes — with his indictment in Florida coming just months after his indictment in New York for his alleged role in a hush money payment made to adult film star Stormy Daniels.

Mr Suarez has no connection to the case, except that it is playing out in the town where he is mayor. The timing, however, is interesting: Mr Suarez suggested to a reporter on Tuesday morning that he will formally kick off his bid for the White House with a speech on Thursday.

When Mr Suarez enters the race, his most formidable opponent will be Mr Trump. He will also have to contend with the presence of his state’s governor Ron DeSantis, who has staunchly defended Mr Trump in the documents case even as Mr Trump has repeatedly attacked him since the beginning of the year.

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