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3 ways Republicans are trying to use Trump’s conviction to their advantage

For the first time in American history, a political party is set to nominate a felon as its presidential candidate.

Republicans continue to rally around Donald Trump, who was found guilty in the New York hush money trial on May 30. He will be sentenced on July 11, just days before the Republican National Convention begins in Milwaukee.

The team at NPR's Trump's Trials podcast broke down three ways the GOP is trying to use Trump’s conviction to the party's advantage.

1. Rally the base

Within minutes of hearing the jury’s decision in Trump’s hush money case, Republican lawmakers flocked to his defense and attacked detractors.

That wasn’t surprising. In fact, after Republican Senate candidate Larry Hogan, who is seen as a moderate and has been critical of Trump, wrote on the social media platform X that Americans should “respect the verdict” and that “all leaders” should “reaffirm what has made this nation great: the rule of law,” Trump adviser Chris LaCivita responded: “You just ended your campaign.”

Trump is expected to appeal the conviction after he is sentenced. For now, he is continuing to cast doubt on the judicial system.

Trump and his allies have, without evidence, said the case was “rigged,” accused the justice system of being “weaponized” by the Biden administration, and claimed the case was politically motivated. In doing so, they are seeking to cast suspicion on the validity of Trump’s guilty verdict and further paint him as the victim of a conspiracy led by the Biden administration.

To be clear, the Department of Justice and the Biden administration were not involved in this case. That’s because this was a state case (which also means Trump would not be able to pardon himself if he wins the election in

Read more on npr.org