GOP presidential hopeful Asa Hutchinson said former President Donald Trump would likely be found guilty of felony charges, sparking a round of audience boos.
A vocally anti-Trump Republican presidential candidate drew a long round of boos from the audience and calls from one lawmaker on Capitol Hill to “drop out” from the race after claiming that former President Donald Trump would likely be found guilty on felony charges.
Republican presidential hopeful Asa Hutchinson, a long-time critic of President Trump, told the Florida Freedom Summit in Kissimmee, Florida, that he believes there’s a “significant likelihood” that President Trump will be found guilty of a felony offense next year and that this will be proof of America’s justice system “at work.”
The remark from the former Arkansas governor and erstwhile prosecutor elicited a prolonged outcry of audience boos.
“Next March not only brings us March Madness, it will also—we will witness our justice system at work and on trial in federal and state courtrooms,” Mr. Hutchinson said, teeing up his prediction for a Trump guilty verdict.
“As someone who has been in the courtroom for over 25 years as a federal prosecutor and also in defending some of the most serious criminal cases, I can say that there is a significant likelihood that Donald Trump will be found guilty by a jury on a felony offense next year,” he said.
President Trump, who is the front-runner for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, faces a total of 91 felony counts, to which he has pleaded not guilty while claiming they’re all part of a political hack job to hamstring his White House run.
Audience Erupts With Boos
As Mr. Hutchinson was concluding his prediction that President Trump would be found guilty on at least one of the 91 felony counts he faces, the audience erupted in boos.
The jeers lasted for about a minute, partly drowning Mr. Hutchinson as he continued to press the point and try to persuade the audience that they should join him in opposing a second Trump term.
“That may or may not happen when you vote in March and it might not make any difference to you but it will make a difference for our chances to attract independent voters in November,” Mr. Hutchinson said—though the crowd seemed to be having none of it as it continued to heckle.
By Tom Ozimek