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Trump compares court ordering him to pay millions in civil fraud case to Navalny's death

Trump compares court ordering him to pay millions in civil fraud case to Navalny's death



Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday compared his $355 million fine for fraudulently inflating the value of his properties to the death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

It's a form of Navalny, Trump said during a Fox News town hall in South Carolina, when asked how he plans to pay the judgment in his civil fraud case. It is a form of communism or fascism.

The former president, who faces 91 criminal charges in multiple cases, continued to baselessly suggest he was politically targeted in the same way the outspoken Kremlin critic was.

Trump, the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination, has not condemned Russia or President Vladimir Putin for Navalny's death, in stark contrast to the swift and forceful reactions of Western leaders, including President Joe Biden , who blamed Putin in a speech from the White House hours after the news of Navalny's death.

In Trump's most detailed comments about Navalny, the former president said Tuesday: Navalny, he was in a very sad situation and he is very courageous. He was a very brave guy because he came back, he could have stayed away and frankly it probably would have been much better to stay away and talk about it from outside the country rather than having to to go back there.

And it's a horrible thing. But this also happens in our country. We are becoming a communist country in many ways. “And if you look closely, I'm the leading candidate, I've been indicted, I've been indicted four times, I have eight or nine trials, all because of the fact that I'm in politics,” said Trump.

The imprisoned Russian opponent died at the age of 47, the Russian prison administration announced last week. He had returned to Russia in 2021 from Germany, where he was treated after being poisoned with a Soviet-era nerve agent. Upon arrival, Navalnvy was quickly arrested on charges he dismissed as politically motivated.

When Trump was in the White House, he refused to join other world leaders in condemning Russia after the 2020 Navalny poisoning. Trump has long expressed affection and admiration for Putin and has gone so far as to side with sided with the Russian leader over the country's interference in the 2016 US presidential election, in a resounding rebuke of the US intelligence community.

The former president went days without publicly mentioning Navalny, even as others expressed outrage. He later posted on Truth Social that Navalny's death has made me increasingly aware of what is happening in our country, and argued that open borders, rigged elections and blatantly unfair court decisions are in destroying AMERICA.

Biden capitalized on those comments, lambasting Trump in a new video posted to social media for refusing to hold Putin responsible for Navalny's death.

After Putin's fiercest opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, died in a Russian prison last week, former President Trump and other Republicans refused to hold Putin responsible for his death, Biden said. Instead, Trump said Navalny's death made him realize how bad America was. He said, and I quote, we are a nation in decline, a failing nation, end quote. Why does Trump always blame America? Putin is responsible for Navalny's death. Why can't Trump just say that?

Biden also took harsh aim at Trump at a fundraiser in Los Angeles on Tuesday, calling the former president's refusal to condemn Putin outrageous.

Trump is taking us back to the past and not leading us into the future, Biden added.

This story has been updated with additional information.

CNN's Kevin Liptak and Nikki Carvajal contributed to this report.




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