Ex-Trump officials denounce guilty verdict

By Robin Bravender | 05/31/2024 01:31 PM EDT

Former energy and environmental officials and contenders for senior jobs in a second Trump administration are rallying around the former president.

Former President Donald Trump arrives to speak at a news conference at Trump Tower, Friday, May 31, 2024, in New York.

Former President Donald Trump arrives Friday to speak at a news conference at Trump Tower in New York City. A day after a New York jury found Trump guilty of 34 felony charges, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee addressed the conviction and likely attempt to cast his campaign in a new light. Julia Nikhinson/AP

Former President Donald Trump’s friends in the energy and environment world are assailing Thursday’s blockbuster felony conviction as a “political persecution” and a “stain on the American justice system.”

The ex-president became a convicted felon Thursday when a New York jury found him guilty of 34 counts of falsifying business records to cover up a hush money payment to a porn star. The conviction jolted the political arena and the 2024 presidential race as Trump looks to unseat President Joe Biden in the November election.

Trump’s critics reveled in the news, but the former president’s allies — including former aides seen as contenders for top jobs if he wins in November — were quick to denounce the trial and the conviction as a political sham. Some think the outcome will help boost momentum for his presidential campaign.


“An absolute stain on the American justice system,” former Trump Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wrote Thursday on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.