MATTHEWS: Donald Trump’s indictment is unlikely to matter in the court of public opinion 

Former President Donald Trump arrives to speak at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., Tuesday, June 13, 2023, after pleading not guilty in a Miami courtroom earlier in the day to dozens of felony counts that he hoarded classified documents and refused government demands to give them back. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Last week, we learned former President Donald Trump was facing indictment courtesy of a Miami grand jury related to the classified documents probe that began after the FBI raided Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in August 2022. 

The Biden Justice Department alleges Trump violated the Espionage Act. He’s been charged with 37 felony counts, including 31 for alleged “Willful Retention of National Defense Information.” 

“How can DOJ possibly charge me, who did nothing wrong, when no other presidents were charged, when Joe Biden won’t be charged for anything, including the fact that he has 1,850 boxes, much of it classified, and some dating back to his Senate days when even Democrat Senators are shocked,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social page after the news broke. 

“Also, President Clinton had documents, and won in court. Crooked Hillary deleted 33,000 emails, many classified, and wasn’t even close to being charged! Only Trump — the greatest witch hunt of all time!” he concluded. 

As to the merits of the case? Opinions vary, but even legal experts on the conservative side who have long been critics of the highly politicized nature of the Biden DOJ under Attorney General Merrick Garland’s leadership have indicated Trump could be in trouble based on what’s been laid out. 

Another question on a lot of people’s minds is how all of this will impact his presidential election campaign. Will it hurt Trump with voters? 

The answer, in my opinion, is probably not. In fact, back in April when Trump was hit with an indictment by George Soros-backed Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg over allegedly falsifying business records, there was a “rally around” effect in polling where Trump’s numbers shot up. 

The same is likely to occur in this instance, which was explained by New Hampshire Republican Gov. Chris Sununu during an exchange with MSNBC host Jen Psaki, who is a former press secretary for Biden. 

“Obviously [the indictments don’t matter]. No, they absolutely don’t matter,” Sununu observed. “No. These indictments, if I may, (are a condemnation) of the media ― you’re creating The Boy Who Cried Wolf Syndrome, right?” 

He went on to blast Bragg’s actions as well as the Russia/Trump collusion hoax that Democrats and the media pushed for the four years of Trump’s presidency. 

“What happened in New York was wrong. I mean, it really was. They are beating up on Trump for political reasons, everybody sees that. What happened with the Russian ‘collusion’ that never existed effectively exonerated the guy, so he can play a victim card,” Sununu pointed out. “You’ve all created a situation where, God, what kind of planet are we on where Donald Trump’s become the victim? That’s really what it is.” 

They went back and forth over this point as Psaki repeatedly expressed disagreement with his conclusions, but Sununu wasn’t deterred, correctly asserting that people who aren’t already predisposed to hating Trump can see that much of what’s happened to him over the last six years in terms of impeachment and indictment has been politically motivated. 

“Nobody buys that any attack on Trump isn’t anything but political. You’ve created, everybody has, kind of, created this scenario, he’s playing it to the fullest,” Sununu said. “He is playing the violin strings better than anyone imagined which is why his poll numbers have miraculously, are actually going up.” 

Trump is a master at turning a perceived “bombshell” into a positive, and that is already playing out here primarily because, after all this time, a growing number of voters see right through what his Democrat critics have been trying to do. 

Regardless of what one thinks about the specifics of the indictments, it does seem rather convenient that Biden’s Justice Department has leveled charges against the man who could be his opponent in 2024. 

Think about it. 

North Carolina native Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym Sister Toldjah and is a media analyst and regular contributor to RedState and Legal Insurrection.