Supporters of former President Donald Trump have decried his recent criminal charges and have said officials in Fulton County, Georgia, appear intent on humiliating him with the latest indictment. Now, Rep. Andrew Ogles (R-Tenn.) says those humiliation efforts may backfire on the former president’s political opponents.
“I think this backfires on the Democrats. I think they’ve gone too far,” Mr. Ogles said in an interview with NTD News’ ‘Capitol Report‘ on Friday.
After President Trump turned himself in on Thursday night, Fulton County officials staged him for a mugshot and released the photo online.
While one might see their mugshot as an indignity they’d wish to hide, the former president broke a two-and-a-half-year absence from the X social media platform to post the photo with the caption, “ELECTION INTERFERENCE. NEVER SURRENDER!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 25, 2023
President Trump has also begun selling official campaign merchandise featuring the photo, such as mugshot mugs, posters, and t-shirts.
“That mugshot of him, which was meant to humiliate him, has now turned into a rallying cry,” Mr. Ogles said. “He looks ticked off, he looks ready to fight, and he should be.”
Mr. Ogles said he believes people from across the political spectrum will see the former president’s booking photo as a sign that President Trump is being persecuted and that they could similarly be targeted.
“I think regardless of your political persuasion, Republican, Democrat, independent, somewhere in between, this should alarm you that you have a former president being targeted, persecuted,” he said.
“What that means is that you are now vulnerable to the same type of attack. If they don’t like you, they simply can jail you, they can target you, they can try to ruin and destroy your life,” he said.
‘I’m Going on Offense’
Mr. Ogles, who endorsed President Trump’s 2024 presidential campaign earlier this year, called on the rest of the Republican presidential candidates to suspend their campaigns in support of President Trump.
“I would take this moment to say to anyone that’s running in the GOP primary for president, it’s time for you to suspend your campaign and [for] you not hide behind Donald Trump,” he said. “We’ve got to unify here and push back against this attack on America in the Constitution.”
In addition to facing the state-level criminal indictment in Fulton County, President Trump faces another criminal indictment in a Manhattan court, as well as two more indictments for federal charges, which were brought by special counsel Jack Smith.
Mr. Ogles has sponsored a bill to strip Mr. Smith’s federal funding. The bill is dubbed the “YOU’RE FIRED Act,” a probable reference to President Trump’s catchphrase from when he hosted the reality TV show “The Apprentice.”
Addressing his efforts to defund Mr. Smith’s special counsel efforts, Mr. Ogles said, “I hate to make this partisan,” but he said he felt that Democrats have been on the attack and are “using the courts to target us.”
He said that it does not bode well for political disputes within a society to be resolved “by way of courts and prosecutions and jail time” and that his bill might help reverse that trend.
“We’re going to settle this at the ballot box, not in the court,” Mr. Ogles said. “So I’m going on offense. We’ve got to get points on the board. We’ve got to take it to them. We’ve got to fight, fight back. And look, you know, I’m a nerd. I love our founding fathers. I love the Constitution. It’s what protects all of us, and I’m going to fight like hell to preserve it.”