Donald Trump demands that appeals courts reverse his felony conviction at rally

7 June 2024, 05:44

Election 2024 Trump
Election 2024 Trump. Picture: PA

Mr Trump is expected to appeal last month’s conviction on all 34 charges in his New York hush money trial.

Donald Trump returned to the campaign trail on Thursday with a trip to Arizona, his first appearance in a battleground state since he was convicted in a hush money scandal.

He repeated his critiques of the case against him as politically motivated and called for his conviction to be overturned on appeal.

“Those appellate courts have to step up and straighten things out or we’re not going to have a country anymore,” Mr Trump said at a Phoenix town hall organised by Turning Point, a conservative youth organisation.

Mr Trump is expected to appeal last month’s conviction on all 34 charges in his New York hush money trial, in which he became the first former American president to be convicted of felony crimes.

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Former president Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally in Phoenix (Rick Scuteri/AP)

He responded defiantly to the verdict against him a day after a New York jury found him guilty last week of a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election through a hush money payment to a porn actor.

But he had not spoken directly to the swing-state voters who will decide the November election until Thursday, when he used a profanity to decry the “fake” and politically motivated case against him.

The crowd of thousands inside the mega church, where the introductory music was turned up so high that it shook seats and media camera shots, chanted the same profanity in response.

The Phoenix Police Department said 11 people at the event were transported to hospitals, treated and released for heat exhaustion.

Officials said an excessive heat warning was in effect for the area during Mr Trump’s town hall, where many of his supporters were unable to get inside before it reached capacity, and Phoenix set a new record high of around 44C by mid-afternoon.

Mr Trump’s conviction infuriated his supporters, who pumped tens of millions of dollars into his campaign in the immediate aftermath.

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Mr Trump became the first former American president to be convicted of felony crimes (Rick Scuteri/AP)

Mr Trump blames his conviction on President Joe Biden, though the case was brought by the locally elected district attorney in New York, and many of his allies are calling for revenge.

Mr Trump focused much of his hour-long speech and subsequent Q&A on the US-Mexico border, blaming a litany of problems — from inflation to the long-term health of social security — on illegal immigration, characterising Mr Biden’s policies “a deliberate demolition of our sovereignty and our borders”.

The influx of foreign-born adults vastly has raised the supply of available workers after a US labour shortage had left many companies unable to fill jobs.

The availability of immigrant workers eased the pressure on companies to sharply raise wages, and then pass on their higher labour costs to their customers via higher prices that feed inflation, which remains elevated in the US but has plummeted from its levels of two years ago.

Immigrants who work also pay Social Security and other payroll taxes.

Mr Biden won Arizona in 2020 by about 10,000 votes. It was, along with Georgia, one of two states decided by less than half a percentage point and is expected to be close again this year.

Ahead of Mr Trump’s visit, Mr Biden’s allies in Arizona blamed the former president for overturning the national constitutional right to an abortion and defeating a bipartisan border security bill.

By Press Association

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