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Trump: Special counsel Jack Smith might ‘turn out to be a criminal’

Donald Trump is lashing out at special counsel Jack Smith in increasingly hysterical ways. These are not the actions of someone expecting exoneration.


Immediately after Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed Jack Smith to oversee the criminal investigations into Donald Trump, the former president lashed out, but the Republican focused more on the process and less on the person. As we discussed at the time, Trump initially insisted the “rigged” investigation is “sort of like double jeopardy” since he’s been impeached twice.

But in time, the former president turned his attention to Smith personally, labeling him a “Trump Hater” and “political hit man” who shouldn’t be “allowed” to investigate him because someone Smith is related to doesn’t like Trump. He went on condemn Smith as a “fully weaponized monster.”

This morning, the former president got a bit more hysterical, publishing this missive by way of his social media platform:

“The Special ‘Prosecutor’ assigned to the ‘get Trump case,’ Jack Smith(?), is a Trump Hating THUG whose wife is a serial and open Trump Hater, whose friends & other family members are even worse, and as a prosecutor in Europe, according to Ric Grenell, put a high government official in prison because he was a Trump positive person. Smith is known as ‘an unfair Savage,’” & is best friends with the craziest Trump haters....”

For good measure, the Republican published a follow-up item, saying Smith “may very well turn out to be a criminal.” Trump added, “His conflicts, unfairness, and mental state of derangement make him totally unfit for the job of ‘getting Trump.’”

There’s a lot to unpack here, including the question mark after Smith’s name — suggesting that Trump isn’t sure that Jack Smith is actually Jack Smith. I was also struck by the suggestion that Smith prosecuted “a high government official” because “he was a Trump positive person” — an apparent reference to a suspected war criminal in Kosovo.

As for why Trump thinks the special counsel might himself be “a criminal,” I’m sure the former president will come up with something eventually.

The point, of course, goes well beyond Trump’s incoherent rants and the degree to which they’re detached from reality. Rather, what matters most is the former president’s apparent panic: He appears desperate to discredit a highly respected career prosecutor, and he apparently believes frantic online tantrums will do the trick.

These are not the actions of a suspected criminal expecting exoneration.