Donald Trump pleads for fifth after saying only guilty people do

Former President Donald Trump announced he would invoke his Fifth Amendment rights during his testimony Wednesday with New York Attorney General Letitia James, a reversal from the stance he took nearly six years ago when he was speaking for ran for the presidency.

In a statement issued Wednesday, just an hour after Trump arrived at James’s New York City headquarters, the former president said, “I once asked, ‘If you’re innocent, why are you accepting the Fifth Amendment ?’ Now I know the answer to that question.”

“If your family, your business, and everyone around you has become the target of a baseless, politically motivated witch hunt backed by lawyers, prosecutors, and the fake news media, you have no choice,” Trump said.

“Accordingly, on the advice of my attorney and for all of the reasons set forth above, I declined to answer questions regarding the rights and privileges afforded to every citizen under the United States Constitution,” he added.

Donald Trump's Fifth Amendment
On Wednesday, former President Donald Trump said he had “absolutely no choice” but to invoke his Fifth Amendment right during his testimony with New York Attorney General Letitia James. Above, Trump speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference at the Hilton Anatole on August 6 in Dallas.
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

During the 2016 campaign, Trump slammed aides to his former opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton, for pleading fifth in the probe into her use of a private email server.

“So there’s five people taking over the Fifth Amendment, as you can see from the mob, right? You see, the mob takes the Fifth Amendment. If you’re innocent, why are you accepting the Fifth Amendment?” Trump told the crowd at a rally in Iowa in September 2016.

On Wednesday, Trump said recent developments in a series of investigations into the former president had left him “absolutely no choice” but to embrace the Fifth Amendment. Earlier this week, Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence was searched by the FBI in an unprecedented move by federal law enforcement.

“If I had any questions, the FBI’s raid on my home, Mar-a-Lago, by the FBI on Monday, just two days prior to this statement, has removed all uncertainty,” Trump’s statement said. “I have absolutely no choice because the current administration and many prosecutors in this country have lost all moral and ethical boundaries of decency.”

This is an evolving story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

https://www.newsweek.com/donald-trump-pleads-fifth-after-saying-only-guilty-people-do-1732549 Donald Trump pleads for fifth after saying only guilty people do

Rick Schindler

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