White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Friday that President Joe Biden did not know former President Donald Trump would be indicted until the news broke.
A reporter asked Jean-Pierre whether Biden was “given a heads up” about Thursday’s historic indictment.
“The president found out about the news yesterday just like every other American: through the news report,” Jean-Pierre said. “His chief of staff, Jeff Zeitz, let him know what occurred through media reports.” (RELATED: Dem Rep Warns Trump Indictment Is ‘No Cause For Celebration’)
White House Press Sec. Karine Jean-Pierre says President Biden “was not given a heads up” about Donald Trump being indicted by a Manhattan grand jury:
“The president found out about the news yesterday just like every other American: through the news reports.” pic.twitter.com/QscNMIZO5Z
— The Recount (@therecount) March 31, 2023
A Manhattan grand jury voted Thursday to indict Trump following a years-long investigation into an alleged hush money payment to former pornographic actress Stormy Daniels. Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen allegedly paid Daniels $130,000 in exchange for her silence about an alleged affair with Trump, a payment for which Cohen claims Trump reimbursed him. The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office investigation focused on whether Trump forged business records to hide the alleged payout.
Biden remained silent on Trump’s indictment, saying he had “no comment” when asked whether the charges are “politically motivated.”
Federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York opted not to charge Trump for the case in 2019, while the Federal Election Commission dropped its investigation into the case in 2021.