Michael Nigro documents the scene outside Manhattan Criminal Courthouse as Donald Trump is arraigned on 34 felony counts of falsifying business records.
Related Photo Essay: Scenes from a Presidential Indictment

Former U.S. President Donald Trump was indicted this week on 34 felony charges related to hush money payments to porn star Stormy Daniels during the 2016 presidential campaign.

The scene outside the Criminal Courthouse in downtown Manhattan where the arraignment took place was a messy microcosm of politics in America: Passion over reason, and discord over discourse. Soapboxing conspiracies over constructive criticism. Screaming, yelling, fighting and competitive flag-waving.

The park was gerrymandered by New York Police Department metal barriers into a pro-Trump side and an anti-Trump side. It didn’t really matter, though. It was a small park. If one wanted to move about freely to “the other side,” there was nothing preventing it.

Much of the protest was performative, some of it simply odd. A man wore a pointed witch’s hat because “I think this whole thing is a witch hunt.” A wigged Trump impersonator sardonically spewed bloated achievements with the group Blacks for Trump.

Related Marjorie Taylor Greene Shouted Down in Manhattan as Trump Turns Himself In

When Marjorie Taylor Greene, the far-right election-denying representative from Georgia, showed up with a small contingent from the New York Young Republicans, the park became a human tornado that seethed around her.

Green would stay no more than 10 minutes after being shouted down, after which she was  quickly ushered away by her security detail and the NYPD.

The media made up roughly 70% of those in and around the park, numbers that fell far short of the massive protest Trump had tried to muster. The MAGA crowd did not come close to matching numbers of the anti-Trump side.

The next court date for the case is a pre-trial hearing in December, followed by a trial tentatively scheduled for early 2024, when Trump will be running for president again.

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