Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-Ga.) is proposing two amendments to an appropriations bill that would defund the various prosecutions of former President Trump.
He is adding to the defense of the former president mounted by Trump allies in the House as they circle the wagons in the face of four indictments.
Clyde, a member of the House Appropriations Committee, on Monday announced plans for two amendments to the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) fiscal 2024 appropriations bill that would “prohibit the use of federal funding for the prosecution of any major presidential candidate prior to the upcoming presidential election on November 5th, 2024,” according to a press release.
One amendment would pertain to federal prosecutions and the other addresses federal funding for state prosecutions.
That bill, one of 12 regular appropriations bills, is expected to be marked up in the House Appropriations Committee after the House returns in mid-September.
Clyde said he is taking aim at special counsel Jack Smith, who has led charges against Trump relating to attempts to overturn the 2020 election results and retention of classified documents; Manhattan, N.Y., District Attorney Alvin Bragg (D), who charged Trump in relation to 2016 hush-money payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels; and Fulton County, Ga., District Attorney Fani Willis (D), who charged Trump again in relation to the 2020 election.
“Due to my serious concerns about these witch hunt indictments against President Trump, I intend to offer two amendments to prohibit any federal funds from being used in federal or state courts to prosecute major presidential candidates prior to the 2024 election,” Clyde said in a statement. “The American people get to decide who wins the White House — not Deep State actors who have shamelessly attacked Donald Trump since he announced his first bid in 2015. It is imperative that Congress use its power of the purse to protect the integrity of our elections, restore Americans’ faith in our government, and dismantle our nation’s two-tiered system of justice. I’m fully committed to helping lead this effort, and I call on my House Appropriations colleagues to join me in this righteous fight.”
Other staunch allies of Trump in the House have also pledged to use the funding process to defund the prosecutions against Trump.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) has said she would introduce an amendment to defund Smith’s office, and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) in July introduced a bill to do so. Rep. Andy Ogles (R-Tenn.) earlier this month introduced a bill to defund Smith’s federal salary.
But because Clyde sits on the Appropriations Committee, he will have the first crack at getting a recorded vote on the matter.
Such an amendment could be contentious within the GOP. In July, a Clyde amendment to rescind funds for a new FBI building — a push supported by Republicans who have criticized the agency for alleged bias against Trump — failed due to lack of support from Republicans.