House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has vowed to open an investigation into the Manhattan district attorney’s office after it was reported a grand jury was preparing to indict former President Donald Trump sometime next week.
Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is reportedly preparing to indict Trump on several charges related to an investigation into hush-money payments the then-presidential candidate made to porn star Stormy Daniels in 2016. It’s not clear when such charges would be pressed, but prosecutors have indicated an indictment is imminent.
“Here we go again — an outrageous abuse of power by a radical DA who lets violent criminals walk as he pursues political vengeance against President Trump,” McCarthy said in a tweet on Saturday. “I’m directing relevant committees to immediately investigate if federal funds are being used to subvert our democracy by interfering in elections with politically motivated prosecutions.”
McCarthy didn’t clarify which committees he would task with investigating the matter. However, the investigation would follow several other inquiries into the so-called “weaponization” of government agencies that conservatives say are used against them.
The speaker’s statement comes just hours after Trump posted on his Truth Social account that he expects to be arrested on “Tuesday of next week” and urged his supporters to protest and “take our nation back.” A spokesperson for the former president clarified his post in a later statement, noting Trump does not have any direct knowledge of the timing of a possible arrest.
“President Trump is rightfully highlighting his innocence and the weaponization of our injustice system,” the statement said.
Reports of a looming indictment emerged after former Trump attorney Michael Cohen testified before the Manhattan grand jury multiple times last week, and Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, met with prosecutors on Wednesday.
Cohen was previously convicted in 2018 after pleading guilty to paying two women who accused Trump of sexual affairs to be silent, which included Daniels. As part of the scheme, Cohen paid Daniels $130,000 and was later reimbursed by the Trump Organization.
Manhattan prosecutors later opened an investigation into whether Trump falsified business records to list the reimbursement as a legal expense. Such a crime is a misdemeanor in New York but could be enhanced to a felony if Bragg's office argues the fraud was intended to conceal a second crime.
At the time of Cohen’s trial, federal prosecutors did not press charges against Trump due to guidance from the Justice Department that a sitting president cannot be charged with a crime. However, prosecutors revived discussions about possible charges shortly before Trump left office in 2021.