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Republican Presidential Candidates on the Trump Investigations

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Where the Republican Candidates Stand on the Trump Investigations

Former President Donald J. Trump has been indicted four times now: twice over his attempts to overturn the 2020 election, both in Georgia and federally. The Justice Department also indicted him over his retention of classified documents. His first indictment, in New York, was over hush payments to a pornographic actress. He has cast every investigation as politically motivated and legally meritless — and most of the Republicans looking to beat him have gone along.

Headshot of Donald J. Trump

He has denied any wrongdoing and raged at the justice system.

Headshot of Ron DeSantis

He has mildly criticized Trump’s actions, but mostly attacks the justice system as biased.

Headshot of Tim Scott

He calls the allegations serious but still says the charges are an anti-Republican “hunt.”

Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina called the New York indictment a “travesty” and said the district attorney had “weaponized the law against political enemies,” an argument he repeated in almost identical words regarding the federal and Georgia election indictments.

Headshot of Vivek Ramaswamy

He is Trump’s fiercest defender and has denounced the justice system in incendiary terms.

The entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy has repeatedly cast the indictments as examples of “the ruling party” using “police power to arrest its political rivals,” and has urged other candidates to pledge to pardon Mr. Trump.

Headshot of Nikki Haley

While she has aired a misgiving about Trump, she mostly avoids running afoul of him.

Nikki Haley, the former governor of South Carolina and former United Nations ambassador, has shifted from an unequivocal denunciation of the first indictment in March to an argument in July that Mr. Trump’s legal troubles were creating an unacceptable distraction.

Headshot of Mike Pence

He says history will hold Trump accountable, but the courts probably shouldn’t.

Headshot of Chris Christie

He is a leading voice among the field in condemning Trump.

With former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey building his campaign around his willingness to criticize Mr. Trump, the indictments have been obvious fodder for him.

Headshot of Asa Hutchinson

He has called on Trump to drop out of the presidential race.

I have said from the beginning that Donald Trump’s actions on Jan. 6 should disqualify him from ever being president again. Anyone who truly loves this country and is willing to put the country over themselves would suspend their campaign for president of the United States immediately.”

Headshot of Doug Burgum

He has refused to talk about the indictments.

Gov. Doug Burgum of North Dakota has avoided talking about the indictments, at times expressing annoyance that reporters were asking him about them.

Headshot of Will Hurd

Will Hurd

Former United States Representative

He is a leading voice among the field in condemning Trump.

Former Representative Will Hurd of Texas has been more scathingly critical of Mr. Trump’s behavior than any other candidate except Mr. Christie.

Headshot of Francis Suarez

He hasn’t said much about the cases, but would consider pardoning Trump.

Mayor Francis X. Suarez of Miami expressed unease with the New York case, suggesting that indicting a former president was a “slippery slope” away from democratic norms.

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