The Republican candidates running for president in the 2024 election are reacting to news of former President Donald Trump being federally indicted in a classified documents probe.
Here's what they had to say:
Ron DeSantis said in a statement, "The weaponization of federal law enforcement represents a mortal threat to a free society. We have for years witnessed an uneven application of the law depending upon political affiliation."
Sen. Tim Scott addressed Trump's indictment in an interview on Fox News.
"What we've seen over the last several years is the weaponization of the Department of Justice against the former president."
He added, "What we see is a justice system where the scales are weighted."
Former President Mike Pence addressed the indictment on Friday morning in an interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt.
He noted that he doesn't know the facts in the case and that the handling of classified materials is a "serious matter."
However, Pence also claimed the Department of Justice has been politicized.
"I had hoped the DOJ would see its way clear to resolve this without an indictment. I think this is going to be terribly divisive for the country," Pence said. "I also think it sends a terrible message to the wider world that looks at America as a standard of not only democracy, but of justice."
Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson took a more pointed tone toward the Trump indictment.
“With the news that Donald Trump has been indicted for the second time, our country finds itself in a position that weakens our democracy. Donald Trump's actions — from his willful disregard for the Constitution to his disrespect for the rule of law — should not define our nation or the or the Republican Party," Hutchinson said in a statement.
He added," This reaffirms the need for Donald Trump to respect the office and end his campaign."
Vivek Ramaswamy was critical of the DOJ, saying it operates a two-tiered justice system.
"This is an affront to every citizen: we cannot devolve into a banana republic where the party in power uses police force to arrest its political opponents," he stated. "It’s hypocritical for the DOJ to selectively prosecute Trump but not Biden.
Ramaswamy added that he would pardon Trump if he were to be elected president.
Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has been one of Trump's fiercest critics in the race. The former federal prosecutor urged caution before knowing the facts of the case.
"As I have said before, no one is above the law, no matter how much they wish they were," Christie stated. "We will have more to say when the facts are revealed.
Larry Elder also claimed the DOJ is embracing a two-tiered justice system, calling Trump's indictment a "partisan prosecution."
Nikki Haley and Doug Burgum have not yet publicly commented on Trump's indictment.
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