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Vermont's Welch, Balint say Trump's conviction means 'no one is above the law'

A man wearing a suit with a blue tie walks through a crowd of other men with his head tilted slightly downward
Seth Wenig
Associated Press, Pool
Former President Donald Trump walks to make comments to members of the media after a jury convicted him of felony crimes for falsifying business records in a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election, at Manhattan Criminal Court, Thursday, May 30, 2024, in New York.

U.S. Senator Peter Welch and Rep. Becca Balint each said the conviction of former president Donald Trump on 34 criminal charges, stemming from his efforts to hide an alleged affair with an adult film star, is a reaffirmation of the strength of the American judicial system because "no one is above the law."

A New York jury found Trump guilty Thursday on all counts of manipulating business records to cover up a sex scandal that could have affected the outcome of the 2016 presidential campaign.

Welch said the verdict will probably strengthen Trump's popularity with his base of supporters, but could cause independent voters to question the integrity of Trump's candidacy in this year's presidential election.

"No one is above the law, including the president of the United States, so it's a real affirmation for that founding principle of our country that is so essential for our wellbeing," Welch said.

Balint said the jury verdict is an important milestone.

"No one is above the law, not even the former president," Balint said. "It does reaffirm for me that we have to continue to insist, right, we are not a nation of kings, we're not a nation of despots, right? We're a nation of public servants who are elected to serve the people."

Trump responded to the verdict by repeatedly calling it a "rigged trial," and a "disgrace." He is expected to appeal the ruling.

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Bob Kinzel has been covering the Vermont Statehouse since 1981 — longer than any continuously serving member of the Legislature. With his wealth of institutional knowledge, he answers your questions on our series, "Ask Bob."
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