Donald Trump’s Most Infamous Hillary Clinton Criticism Now Haunts Him

These days, Donald Trump is understandably focused on criticizing Joe Biden. This is understandable…not only did Biden defeat Trump in the 2020 election, but the two are getting ready for a rematch in the form of the upcoming 2024 election.

Before all that, though, Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election. Leading up the actual election, Trump levied a number of criticisms toward Hillary Clinton, the most famous being that she should be locked up for her alleged crimes.

Now, Trump’s own legal woes have him claiming that he never criticized Clinton like that. What did Trump say then, what is he saying now, and what does it mean for the election? Keep reading to find out!

Hillary Clinton’s email server drama

It’s been nearly a decade, so you might have forgotten Hillary Clinton’s potential legal drama ahead of the 2016 election. In short, she previously used a private email server for official business rather than her State Department email which used federal servers.

Years later, the FBI confirmed that Clinton’s server didn’t have any classified information in it. Nonetheless, many in and out of the government felt that her using a private server for official business like this was a violation of both State Department protocol and federal law. She was already being criticized during her election campaign for all of this, but it was Donald Trump who ended up weaponizing her legal drama in a particularly brutal way.

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Trump’s infamous debate remarks

During an October 2016 debate with Hillary Clinton, she told everyone watching that “it’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country.” Though it wasn’t his turn to speak, Trump wasted no time interrupting by saying “Because you’d be in jail.”

This wasn’t exactly a new sentiment for Trump, of course. He previously said that Clinton belonged in jail in a San Jose speech as well as a rally in Redding, California. But because the entire world was watching his later debate with Clinton, his quick comment soon became a rallying cry for his followers.

A rallying cry for Trump’s supporters

One of the things that Donald Trump is very good at is distilling simple concepts into slogans and soundbites. The most famous, of course, is his “Make America Great Again” slogan. When it came to his criticisms of Hillary Clinton, however, Trump’s supporters beat him to the punch by turning the whole idea into three little syllables: “lock her up.”

It didn’t take long before Trump started echoing his own followers. At a 2016 rally in Greensboro, North Carolina, he agreed with the chants of the crowd, saying “For what she’s done, they should lock her up, she’s disgraceful.” 

Almost right before the 2016 election, Trump claimed that Clinton shouldn’t be elected because “we could very well have a sitting president under a felony indictment,” something he said would be a “constitutional crisis” that “would grind government to a halt.” These days, however, Trump’s own legal drama has him rapidly denying his earlier statements.

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Donald Trump: convicted felon

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Donald Trump is now a convicted felon. He was tried for “falsification of business records” related to a hush money payment to Stormy Daniels, the porn star that he allegedly cheated on Melania Trump with. The prosecution claimed that this payment was explicitly intended to keep voters from knowing about the alleged affair ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

The jury agreed, and Trump was convicted of a whopping 34 felonies. He will certainly appeal this (more on this soon), but right now, Trump is facing the very situation he claimed Hillary Clinton could face. Namely, running for an election where, should he win, we’d “have a sitting president under a felony indictment.”

Trump’s selective memory

Recently, Donald Trump did something that flabbergasted even the most steadfast conservatives. When he went on the Fox News’ Will Cain Show, the titular host mentioned how Trump threatened to lock Hillary Clinton up but never followed through. To this, Trump incredibly replied, “I didn’t say, ‘Lock her up,’ but the people would all say, ‘Lock her up. Lock her up.’”

Of course, there are numerous recorded incidents of Trump saying both the exact phrase and other phrases that express the same sentiment. From the outside looking in, it’s difficult to tell what Trump’s motivation is. Did he genuinely forget something that he spent literally years saying? Or is this just his attempt to control this particular narrative, knowing that his previous words could easily hurt his election chances?

We may never know for sure. However, we will eventually have an answer to the question of whether the law will end up locking Trump up. First, he’s going to appeal the verdict, and there’s a chance this could clear his name. If that appeal doesn’t go through, though, and Trump wins the upcoming election, there is a small chance that he might become the first president to lead America from a jail cell rather than the White House.

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