Donald Trump insisted on turning his Tuesday arraignment into a spectacle, and he’s going to get his wish.
A law enforcement official tells Rolling Stone that the former president was offered a chance to surrender quietly and be arraigned over Zoom. Instead, Trump opted for a midday, high-profile booking at the Manhattan courthouse, the official says.
“He wanted a perp walk, he wanted daylight hours,” says the law enforcement official, who’s involved in aspects of the security planning. “He wants to get out of the vehicle and walk up the stairs. This is a nightmare for Secret Service, but they can only strongly suggest — not order — that Trump enter through the secure tunnels,” the official says. “Trump wants to greet the crowd. This should be a surprise to no one — especially not his detail.”
Secret Service had argued in favor of holding the proceedings outside of court business hours, at night with minimal cameras and less risk. But Trump, a source close to his legal team says, wants to create the type of scene that he believes will galvanize his supporters.
“It’s kind of a Jesus Christ thing. He is saying ‘I’m absorbing all this pain from all around from everywhere so you don’t have to,’ ” says the source. Describing the message Trump hopes to send his supporters, the source says: “ ‘If they can do this to me they can do this to you,’ and that’s a powerful message.” [Continue reading…]