Bend the Arc statement on Donald Trump's conviction

Bend the Arc statement on Donald Trump's conviction

May 30, 2024

Thursday, May 30, 2024
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Bend the Arc statement on Donald Trump's conviction

Trump’s first criminal trial has concluded, but his movement’s threat to our democracy remains — emboldened and looming large. As American Jews, we are taking the threat seriously. We know the MAGA agenda puts Jewish people in danger, as it does for all communities targeted by white supremacy.

The MAGA movement has seized this opportunity to continue laying the groundwork for their dangerous vision for undoing our democratic systems. Throughout the trial, Trump used the platform of media coverage to spew his own narrative of being persecuted, despite his bold-faced lies and myriad attempts to steal the election. His allies in Congress showed up at the courthouse to support him, in an unprecedented cosign of his attacks on our institutions and systems of accountability. They all have used this moment to attempt to undermine confidence in our democracy and pave the way for their authoritarian vision.

We may not see Trump’s even more consequential criminal cases come to trial this year, which specifically pertain to his attempts to subvert our country’s electoral process. But in this trial, we have seen a preview of the months to come — and if we’re unable to stop it, a preview of the MAGA movement’s priorities if Trump is elected (or contests the election, if he loses). It’s not a secret plan; it’s their stated agenda. They are seeking to dismantle our democracy, pillar by pillar, to build a country only for people like them.

Jewish people are not safe in this vision of the future, no matter how loudly MAGA Republicans claim to stand against antisemitism. In statements before and after the verdict, Trump again evoked the antisemitic Soros myth, suggesting that the prosecution was part of a Jewish conspiracy to undermine his candidacy and undermine America. At rallies and in speeches to press at his court dates, he repeatedly referred to the deadly 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, VA — where his supporters chanted “Jews will not replace us,” based on the antisemitic “Great Replacement” conspiracy theory — as a “little peanut.” In a recent ad, Trump’s campaign featured a headline about a “Unified Reich” — a nod to his dreams of being a dictator and re-creating Hitler’s Germany. And, in interviews, he continues to perpetuate antisemitic ideas of dual or questionable national loyalty, saying that American Jews are disloyal to the country if they vote against him. 

But we will vote against him because our vision is much stronger. We know that together, we will build a multiracial democracy, where Jews and all people are safe and thriving.

The verdict is in, but the threat remains. The months ahead are what will count for our future.

Bend the Arc: Jewish Action is uniting a movement of tens of thousands of progressive Jews across the country who are fighting for justice and equality for all. We are the only national Jewish organization focused exclusively on social change in the United States.