- The Washington Times - Friday, March 31, 2023

Rep. Nancy Pelosi was flagged on Twitter for a tweet saying that former President Donald Trump can “prove innocence” in a trial, suggesting that Mr. Trump is guilty until proved otherwise.

“No one is above the law, and everyone has the right to a trial to prove innocence,” Mrs. Pelosi, California Democrat, tweeted after Mr. Trump‘s indictment by a New York grand jury.

In an advisory attached to her tweet, readers added context.

“Ms. Pelosi mistakenly says that Trump can prove his innocence at trial. Law in the U.S. assumes the innocence of a defendant, and the prosecution must prove guilt for a conviction,” the advisory said. It provided a link to the Cornell Law School’s page on “presumption of innocence.”

“A presumption of innocence means that any defendant in a criminal trial is assumed to be innocent until they have been proven guilty,” the law school states.

Republicans criticized the former House speaker for twisting a basic principle of criminal law in a case involving her political adversary.

“This tweet — and the indictment it’s praising — is a mockery of our justice system,” posted Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican. “Pelosi says Trump has a ‘right’ to ‘prove [his] innocence.’ That’s exactly BACKWARDS: Under our Constitution, you’re innocent until proven guilty.”

House Republican Conference Chairwoman Elise Stefanik, New York Republican, said, “Guilty until proven innocent is not how it works in America.”

Ms. Stefanik said in a statement, “Although radical Authoritarian Nancy Pelosi no longer holds her Speaker’s gavel, she is still considered a leader in the House Democrat Caucus. Her comments on the unprecedented and corrupt indictment of Former President Trump are deeply offensive, unAmerican, and completely counter to the American principles of equal justice under the law and the presumption of innocence until proven guilty. These comments must be condemned by all.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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