Trump Must Be Indicted to 'Protect the American People': Glenn Kirschner

Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner said Saturday that former President Donald Trump must be indicted in order to "protect the American people," referencing the concerns raised by conservative former judge, attorney J. Michael Luttig, as he testified publicly during a hearing of the House select committee investigating the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol on Thursday.

"Donald Trump and his allies and supporters are a clear and present danger to American democracy," Luttig warned in his testimony. In his opening statement before the committee, the former judge urged: "We need to get back to the solemn business of preserving, protecting, and defending the Constitution of the United States and the United States of America."

Kirschner, who is now a legal analyst at MSNBC and NBC News, gave an overview of some of the hearing's highlights, and Luttig's dire remarks in a YouTube video. The former federal prosecutor referenced Trump's speech in Tennessee at the Faith & Freedom Coalition's Road to Majority Policy Conference on Friday, arguing that it showed the former president continues to "endanger America."

In the clip, Kirschner highlighted the former judge's concerns that Trump is a "clear and present danger." He also reminded viewers of evidence shown by the House select committee on Thursday, which revealed pro-Trump rioters on January 6 came within about 40 feet of then-Vice President Mike Pence.

Former President Donald Trump
Former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner said Saturday that former President Donald Trump should be indicted to "protect the American people" in a YouTube video. Above, Trump gives the keynote address at a Faith & Freedom Coalition event on Friday in Nashville, Tennessee. Seth Herald/Getty Images

Trump and his allies had been publicly and privately urging Pence to unconstitutionally reject the electors from several key swing states in an effort to prevent President Joe Biden from taking office. Pence refused to comply with the plan, asserting that he did not have the power to unilaterally choose the president.

Many of the pro-Trump rioters on January 6 were chanting "hang Mike Pence," while some brought a large gallows and placed it outside the Capitol. During the riot, Trump tweeted out: "Mike Pence didn't have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!"

During his Friday remarks at the conservative event in Tennessee, Trump doubled-down on his criticism of Pence. "Mike did not have the courage to act," he said. "Mike was afraid of whatever he was afraid of."

Kirschner contended that this demonstrated Trump's views have not changed, and that he still presents a "danger" to the country, as the former president believes Pence should have gone along with the unconstitutional plot to keep him in power.

"There is a way to deal with a clear and present danger," the legal expert said. "There is a way to deal with a man who committed crimes to try to end our democracy, and who's still at it. You indict him. You neutralize him. You get the accountability ball rolling."

"I mean, a clear and present danger? 40 feet and closing? Tomorrow maybe 30 feet? Then 20 feet? It's time to take overt law enforcement steps to address the clear and present danger and to protect the American people, because justice matters," Kirschner concluded.

Trump Still Believes Election Was "Rigged"

Trump continues to deny any wrongdoing related to January 6 or his efforts to overturn the election results. To the contrary, the former president continues to insist that the 2020 election was "rigged" or "stolen," although no evidence has emerged corroborating the allegations.

Trump's former attorney general, William Barr, who was widely viewed as one of the former president's most loyal Cabinet members, testified before the House select committee, asserting that he told his boss to his face that the claims were "bulls**t." Barr said that he was concerned that Trump had become "detached from reality," pointing out the absurdity of the conspiracy theories.

Furthermore, over 60 election challenge lawsuits filed by Trump and his allies failed in state and federal courts. Even judges appointed by the former president dismissed the cases when they came before them. Audits and recounts across the country—including in places where they were managed by pro-Trump Republicans—have consistently reaffirmed the former president's loss.

Kirschner has previously argued that Trump should be charged with treason due to his actions related to January 6.

"And I happen to believe he is on the hook for treason," the legal expert alleged during an interview with The Dean Obeidallah Show last Wednesday, "because he levied war against the United States, against the democratic process, against the certification of Joe Biden's win on January 6."

"And I happen to believe he is on the hook for treason because he levied war against the United States, against the democratic process, against the certification of Joe Biden's win on January 6," Kirschner added.

Trump "sent his attack dogs to stop the certification—sent them to the Capitol. He refused to call them off for more than three hours and we also know he refused to send reinforcements to defend the Capitol against the attack he had launched. He put everyone's lives in danger at the Capitol that day."

"If that's not levying war against the United States, which is the very definition of treason...Donald Trump is on the hook for treason," he said.

Newsweek reached out to Trump's press office for comment.