Republicans ready to welcome Trump to Georgia GOP convention despite federal indictment
By Bryan Mims, WSB-TV,2023-06-09
COLUMBUS, Ga. — Former President Donald Trump will make his first public appearance since being indicted by a federal grand jury at the Georgia GOP Convention this weekend.
The convention began Friday in Columbus.
Up to 3,600 Georgia GOP delegates, alternates, and guests are expected to gather at the convention this weekend from every corner of the state.
While they may support different candidates for president, Channel 2 Action News reporter Bryan Mims learned that they’re all united on one front: their disdain for the government’s charges against Trump.
“When he was in office, we were a lot better off,” said Joseph Gibson, a Republican delegate from Burke County.
Gibson said he plans to vote for Trump next year, never mind the federal indictment against him on charges of mishandling classified documents.
“Do you think the indictment and his legal troubles will hurt him at all?” Mims asked Gibson.
“No. I have a feeling it will increase his poll percentages,” Gibson said.
It’s a prevailing point of view at Georgia’s Republican Convention -- that Trump’s legal troubles will only embolden his supporters.
“It’s just false pretense. They’re just trying to destroy his life. They don’t want to see him in the White House anymore,” delegate Dorothy Harpe said.
Democratic U.S. Sen. Jon Ossoff, who was sitting in as a talk show host on WSB Radio on Friday, said he doesn’t want to politicize the indictment and be a pundit.
“Protecting classified information matters. It matters to our national security, and we are a nation of laws in which no one is above the law. This process will play out in federal court,” Ossoff said.
Democratic National Committee chair Jamie Harrison said the accusations against Trump are grave.
“I’m not going to spend any time or comment on these investigations. I’ll allow these investigations to play their course. But regardless of what happens in Trump’s legal proceedings, we know this: the Republican party remains firmly in the hold of Donald Trump and MAGA Republicans,” Harrison said.
Trump is one of several prominent Republicans set to speak over the weekend, along with Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and former Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake.
Someone who’s not attending – Gov. Brian Kemp.