‘Travesty of justice’: Silicon Valley GOP defends Trump after conviction
Shane Patrick Connolly, the chair of Santa Clara County's Republican Party, is pictured in this file photo.

Silicon Valley’s top GOP leader says the region’s Republicans are standing by Donald Trump after he became the first U.S. president convicted of a crime — calling the felony convictions a “travesty of justice.”

“The lawfare being waged against the former president and those who advised him or served in his administration by partisan Democrats is the sort of behavior that we see from tin-pot dictatorships and authoritarian regimes,” Shane Patrick Connolly, chair of the Santa Clara County Republican Party, told San José Spotlight.

He said former President Trump, who was found guilty Thursday on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records in his New York trial, should continue his 2024 run for president.

“In a word, no. Trump should not drop out of the race,” Patrick Connolly said. “In this case that should never have been brought — and would not have been brought against anyone not a former president named Trump — a hyper-partisan prosecutor colluded with other Democrat partisans to create felonies out of what would have been misdemeanors to which the statute of limitations would no longer apply, and then a politically-biased judge (a donor to anti-Republican and ‘progressive’ Democrats), operating in a jurisdiction that voted overwhelmingly for Biden, helped create conditions to steer the jury toward a conviction.”

The case centered on allegations that Trump falsified business records to hide hush money paid to porn star Stormy Daniels after a sexual encounter. Prosecutors said the former president and presumptive GOP nominee, unlawfully interfered with the 2016 presidential election by falsifying the records. The porn actress was paid $130,000 disguised as legal payments to former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen.

Trump, 77, maintained his innocence outside the New York courtroom Thursday, calling the case “rigged.” His sentencing hearing is set for July 11, just four days before the Republican National Convention in Wisconsin.

Patrick Connolly said Bay Area Republicans believe the convictions should be overturned on appeal.

Silicon Valley Democratic leaders called the legal process fair and a “just outcome.”

“I do not know how this will affect the election,” Bill James, chair of the Santa Clara County Democratic Party, told San José Spotlight. “We’ve always known Trump would not be a good president. He’s not a moral or upright person, he wasn’t an effective president and we disagree with him on almost every policy and we are 100% behind reelecting President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.”

James said the county party will use Trump’s status as a convicted felon against him to sway undecided South Bay voters.

“The verdict puts local Republicans in a position of either trying to justify Trump’s conduct and defend him or try to create some distance,” James added. “We believe that will put local republicans in a tough spot.”

Contact Brandon Pho at [email protected] or @brandonphooo on X, formerly known as Twitter. 

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