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Local and state political leaders react to the conviction of former President Donald Trump

Former President Donald Trump comments to members of the media after a jury convicted him of felony crimes for falsifying business records in a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election, at Manhattan Criminal Court, Thursday, May 30, 2024, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool)
Seth Wenig
/
Pool AP
Former President Donald Trump comments to members of the media after a jury convicted him of felony crimes for falsifying business records in a scheme to illegally influence the 2016 election, at Manhattan Criminal Court, Thursday, May 30, 2024, in New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool)

Comments started coming in to WXXI News and other media email boxes after former President Donald Trump was found guilty on all 34 counts in his criminal hush money trial.

It is the first time a former president was ever tried or convicted in a criminal case, and is the first of Trump’s four indictments to reach trial. At the heart of the charges are reimbursements paid to Trump’s former lawyer for a hush money payment to adult film actor Stormy Daniels in exchange for not going public with her claim about a 2006 sexual encounter with Trump.

Governor Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, issued a statement that said the verdict “reaffirms that no one is above the law.” Hochul said in preparation for a verdict, she directed her administration to closely coordinate with local and federal law enforcement and continues to monitor the situation.

Hochul added that, “We are committed to protecting the safety of all New Yorkers and the integrity of our judicial system.”

Another Democrat, 25th Congressional District Rep. Joe Morelle, who represents the Rochester area, issued a statement saying that the conviction “makes crystal clear a fundamental truth of our democracy: no one, not even a former President of the United States is above the law.”

On the Republican side, NY GOP Chair Ed Cox called the verdict “a miscarriage of justice more benefitting a banana republic than the United States of America,” and Cox predicted the conviction will ultimately be overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.

A local Republican member of Congress, Rep. Claudia Tenney of the 24th Congressional District, called the trial “a shameless attempt to silence President Trump.” Tenney also accused the judge in the case of imposing “unnecessary and unconstitutional gag orders” on Trump which she said effectively silenced the former president and hindered his ability to campaign freely.

This story includes reporting by the Associated Press.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.