The finger-pointing among Donald Trump’s inner circle has begun. And as his four criminal cases march toward trials, some of his aides, allies and co-defendants are pointing at the former president. In court documents and hearings, lawyers for people in Trump’s orbit — both high-level advisers and lesser known associates — are starting to reveal glimmers of a tried-and-true strategy in cases with many defendants: Portray yourself as a hapless pawn while piling blame on the apparent kingpin.
Three GOP activists who were indicted alongside Trump in Georgia for trying to interfere with the certification of President Joe Biden’s win in the state asserted that their actions were all taken at Trump’s behest. And last week, Trump’s former White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows — also charged in the Georgia case — signaled that his defense is likely to include blaming the former president as the primary driver of the effort.
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NEW: Some of Trump’s codefendants — from Mark Meadows to false electors — have begun shifting blame onto him and presenting defenses that they were just acting at his behest.
— Kyle Cheney (@kyledcheney) September 5, 2023